Legal

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  • Notice of Privacy Practices

    This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully. Effective date May 1, 2013.

    UMMC creates a record of the care and services you receive from us. We call this record your health information. We are required by federal law to keep your health information private. We are also required to provide you with this Notice so that you will know how we use and release your health information. This Notice also lists the rights you have regarding your health information. We will abide by the terms of the Notice. This Notice covers your care provided at UMMC sites of service.

    We reserve the right to change the terms of this Notice and our privacy practices at any time. Any changes will apply to the health information we already have. When we make changes to our privacy practices, we will post an updated Notice in the places where you may get treatment from UMMC. You can also request a copy of this Notice at any time, and you may view a copy of the Notice on our web site at www.umc.edu.

    How UMMC may use and release your health information

    • Uses and releases relating to treatment, payment or health care operations (TPO) & notice of distinct uses and releases for TPO

      • For treatment
        For example, a doctor treating you for chest pain may need to know if you have any existing heart problems so that he/she can make an informed decision concerning your treatment. Additionally, we will/may contact you to (1) remind you of your appointment by calling or mailing a postcard; or (2) discuss treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits that may be of interest to you as a patient.
      • To obtain payment for treatment
        For example, we will release some of your health information to your health insurance company in order to receive payment for your treatment.
      • For health care operations
        For example, administrative personnel or others that perform services for UMMC may review your health information to review the quality and appropriateness of the care you receive.
      • For fundraising activities
        We may contact you about UMMC fundraising activities. You will have the opportunity to opt out of any fundraising material and directions to do so will be included in that material. Your treatment does not depend on whether you decide to opt out of fundraising material or not.
      • Health information exchanges
        We may make your health information available electronically to other healthcare providers or other healthcare entities for treatment, health care operations, or payment purposes by a state, regional or national information exchange service. In doing this, we may receive information that they maintain about you so that you may have continuity in health care, treatment, or payments for health care services.
    • Uses and releases that do not require your permission

      • Emergencies
        We may use or release your health information in an emergency treatment situation.
      • Food and Drug Administration 
        We may use and release your health information to a person or company required by the Food and Drug Administration to track adverse events and as otherwise required.
      • Workman's compensation
        We may use and release your health information as necessary to comply with workman's compensation laws and other similar legally established programs.
      • Federal, state or local law
        We may use and release your health information when required by law.
      •  Government agencies and law enforcement
        We may release your health information to government agencies and law enforcement.
      •  Ordered by a court, tribunal or other judicial proceeding
        We may release your health information when ordered by a court, tribunal or other judicial proceeding.
      •  Public health reasons
        We may use or release your health information for public health reasons.
      • Coroners, medical examiners and funeral home directors
        We may release your health information to a coroner, medical examiner or funeral home director.
      •  Health oversight reasons
        We may release your health information to the government to be used to oversee the health care system.
      • Organ and tissue donation
        We may use and release your health information for organ and tissue donation.
      • Research reasons
        We may release your health information for reviews to prepare a research study and when approved by an institutional review board.
      • Disaster relief reasons
        We may release your health information for the reason of coordinating disaster relief efforts.
      •  Specialized government functions
        We may release the health information of military personnel and veterans in certain situations to the government. We may also release your health information for national security reasons.
      • Avert a serious threat to health or safety
        We may release your health information when necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of the public or another person, such as instances of child and/or elderly abuse or neglect.
      • De-identified protected health information
        We may use and release your health information to a person or company required by the Food and Drug Administration to track adverse events and as otherwise required.
    • Uses and releases to which you have the opportunity to object

      • People who help take care of you
        We may provide your health information to a family member, friend or other person, if they help take care of you, or if they are responsible for paying for your care, unless you tell us not to. In emergencies, you may not be given the chance to tell us not to provide information to those who take care of you.
      • Hospital directory
        If you are admitted to one of our hospitals or units, your name, location within the hospital and religious affiliation will be listed in the hospital directory, unless you tell us not to list you. This information may be released to persons who ask for you by name, such as family and friends, and to members of the clergy.
    • Other uses and releases require your prior written permission

      • Psychotherapy notes
        Psychotherapy notes that may be written by a mental health professional regarding the contents of conversation held within a counseling session and are stored separately from the rest of your health information. Such notes will not be released unless both you and your provider agree.
      • Marketing
        Marketing information typically may only be used or disclosed by UMMC if you provide UMMC with written permission to use or disclose your information.
      • Sale of PHI
        We do not sell your health information. 

      Other uses and releases will be made, of your health information, only with your written permission. You may take back permission once you have given it and your refusal to provide permission will not be held against you; however, it may prevent us from completing a task you have requested, such as enrollment in a research study or to create a report for your attorney. The request to withdraw permission must be made to UMMC in writing. You cannot take back permission if UMMC has already acted in reliance of the permission and as needed to maintain the integrity of a research study.

    Your rights regarding your health information

    •  You have the right to see and to get copies of your health information.
      With only a few exceptions, you have the right to look at, or get copies of your health information that we have. You must make the request in writing. If we do not have your health information, but we know who does, we will tell you how to get it. We will respond to you within 30 to 90 days after receiving your written request. In certain situations, we may deny your request. If we do, we will tell you, in writing, our reasons for the denial and explain your right to have the denial reviewed. If you request copies of your health information, we may charge you a fee based on our cost. Instead of providing the health information you requested, we may provide you with a summary or explanation of the health information as long as you agree to accept a summary and to the cost in advance.

    •  You have the right to request a correction to your health information.
      If you believe that your health information is incorrect or information is missing, you may request that the information be changed or added. You must make the request in writing. You must also give us a reason for your request. We will let you know if we accept your request within 60 days of receiving your request. Under certain circumstances, we may deny the request. If we deny your request, we will let you know why. We will also explain your right to file a written statement of disagreement with the denial. If we approve your request, we will make the change to your information. We will let you know when the change is made. We will also let concerned parties know when the change is made.
    •  You have the right to request a listing of releases we have made of your health information.
      You have the right to an accounting of all entities that obtained information unrelated to treatment, payment, or health care operations without your permission, except as otherwise required by law. We will respond within 60 days of receiving your request. Your request must state the time period desired for the accounting, which must be less than a six-year period and starting after April 14, 2003. The list will contain the date of the release, the name of the recipient and address, if known, a description of the information released, and the reason for the release. If you make more than one request in the same year, you will be charged a fee based on cost for each additional request.
    •  You have the right to request limits on uses and releases of your health information. 
      You have the right to request a limit on the health information we use or release about you for treatment, payment or health care operations. UMMC will agree to all requests to limit releases of health information to a health plan when you have paid out of pocket in full for the healthcare item or service. All other requests will be considered and we are not legally required to accept them. If we accept your request, we will put any limits in writing and abide by them, except in some situations, such as during emergencies. You may not limit the uses and releases that we are legally required or permitted to make.
    •  You have the right to choose how we communicate with you.
      You have the right to request that we communicate with you in a certain way. For example, you may request that we contact you by phone rather than by mail. We will agree to the request as long as we can easily provide it in the format you request. We require that you make requests for confidential communications in writing.
    •  You have the right to receive notification in the event your health information is breached.
      In the event your unsecured protected health information is breached, we will notify you of the occurrence.

    If you would like more information on accessing, obtaining a copy or obtaining a listing of the releases that we have made of your health information, you may call the following number: 1-855-241-2575.

    Mississippi state law

    In some instances, Mississippi law is more limited than federal law. Please contact the UMMC privacy officer if you have any questions regarding Mississippi state privacy laws.

    Filing a complaint

    If you have any questions about this notice, complaints about our privacy practices or would like information on how to file a complaint with UMMC or the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, please contact: the UMMC privacy officer at University of Mississippi Medical Center, 2500 N. State St., Jackson, MS 39216; or call the Compliance Hotline at (601) 984-4722. You will not be penalized or retaliated against for filing a complaint.