HOW WE MAY USE AND DISCLOSE MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU
For each category of use and disclosure, we will try to give some examples, although not every use or disclosure in the category will be listed.
For treatment: We may use your medical information so that we and other health care providers may provide you with medical treatment or services. For example, a doctor treating you for a broken leg may need to know if you have diabetes because diabetes may slow your healing. Also, the doctor may need to provide information to the dietician so we can arrange for appropriate meals.
Different health professionals may also share your medical information in order to coordinate the different services you need.
We may disclose your medical information to people outside the hospital who may be involved in your medical care after you leave the hospital.
For payment: We may disclose your medical information so that treatment and services you receive may be billed by BCH or other health care providers to a third party. For example, your health plan may need to know about surgery you received so they will pay us for the surgery. We may also disclose your medical insurance information to obtain prior approval from your health plan.
For Health Care Operations purposes: We may use and disclose your medical information for our internal operations, such as business management, and administrative activities, legal and auditing functions, and insurance-related activities. We may use medical information to make sure that all of our patients receive quality care, such as reviewing our processes or to evaluate the performance of those caring for you. We may also disclose information to doctors, nurses, technicians, and other personnel for review and learning purposes. We may remove information that identifies you from this set of information so others may use it to study healthcare and healthcare delivery without learning a specific patient’s identity. Under certain circumstances, we may disclose your medical information for the health care operations of other health care providers.
Health Information Exchange: BCH participates in the Colorado Regional Health Information Organization (“CORHIO”) which arranges for the electronic exchange of health information among health care providers in Colorado. BCH may exchange your health information electronically through CORHIO for the purposes described in this Notice. You have the right to request that your information not be included in this exchange.
Hospital Directory: We may disclose certain information about you in the hospital directory while you are a patient. This is so your family, friends, and clergy can visit you at BCH and generally know how you are doing. Limited information such as your name, location in the hospital, your general condition, (e.g. fair, stable, etc.) and religious affiliation, will be released to people who ask for you by name. Your religious affiliation may be given to a member of the clergy even if they do not ask for you by name. You may request to be a confidential patient and not be included in the Hospital Directory. If you choose to do this, no information will be given to any of the above-mentioned people, and your name will not be listed in our directory.
Individuals Involved in your Care or Payment of your Care: We may release your medical information to a friend or family member who is involved in your medical care, or to someone who helped pay for your care.
Notification: We may release your medical information to notify a family member, personal representative or another person responsible for your care of your location, general condition, or death. We also may release your medical information for certain disaster relief purposes.
Contacts: We may contact you to provide appointment reminders, information about treatment alternatives, or other health related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.
Fundraising Activities: We may contact you in an effort to raise money for BCH. We will only use limited information, such as your name, address, and dates of service. With each fundraising communication, you will be notified of your right to opt out of receiving these communications in the future. If you do not want us to contact you, you must notify our Privacy Officer in writing at the address below.
Worker’s Compensation: We may release medical information about you for worker’s compensation or similar programs, which provide benefits for work related injuries or illnesses.
Mental Health Information: State laws create specific requirements for the release of mental health records. BCH will obtain your specific authorization to release mental medical information when required by these laws.
Drug and Alcohol Treatment Records: Specific rules apply to the release of certain drug and alcohol program records, and BCH will obtain your specific authorization to release those records as required by Federal regulation 42 CFR, Part 2.
Miscellaneous: We may use or disclose your medical information without your prior authorization for several other reasons. Subject to certain requirements, we may give out your medical information without prior authorization for public health purposes, abuse or neglect reporting, health oversight audits or inspections, research studies, funeral arrangements, Coroner’s investigations, organ donation, and emergencies. We also may disclose medical information when required by law in response to a request from law enforcement in specific circumstances, for specialized government functions including correctional, military or national security purposes, in response to valid judicial or administrative orders or to avoid a serious health threat. Additional specific rules may apply to mental health records.
Other Disclosures: Other uses and disclosures not described above will be made only with your written authorization. For example, we require your signed authorization for uses and disclosure that constitute the sale of your medical information and for most uses and disclosures of psychotherapy notes. Additionally, we will not use or disclose your medical information for marketing purposes unless we have a signed authorization from you except that an authorization will not be required if (i) a communication occurs face-to-face; (ii) consists of marketing gifts of nominal value. You may revoke your authorization at any time unless we have relied on your authorization or your authorization was required as a condition of obtaining health care services.