Yes, we may disclose health information without your authorization to government agencies and private individuals and organizations in a variety of circumstances in which we are required or authorized by law to do so. Certain health information may be subject to restrictions by federal or state law that may limit or prevent some uses or disclosures. For example, there are special restrictions on the disclosure of health information relating to HIV/AIDS status, genetic information, mental health treatment, developmental disabilities, and drug and alcohol abuse treatment. We comply with these restrictions in our use of your health information.
Examples of the types of disclosures we may be required or allowed to make without your authorization include:
- When Legally Required: PHC will disclose your health information when it is required to do so by any federal, state or local law
- When there are Risks to Public Health: PHC may disclose your health information:
- To public health authorities or to other authorized persons in connection with public health activities, such as for preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability or in the conduct of public health surveillance or investigations
- To collect information or report adverse events related to the quality, safety or effectiveness of FDA regulated products or activities
- To Report Abuse, Neglect, or Domestic Violence: PHC is mandated to notify government agencies if we believe a member is the victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence.
In Connection with Judicial and Administrative Proceedings: PHC may disclose your health information in the course of any judicial or administrative proceeding in response to an order of a court or administrative tribunal as expressly authorized by such order or in response to a subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process, but only when PHC makes reasonable efforts to either notify you about the request or to obtain an order protecting your health information.
For Law Enforcement Purposes:
- As required by law for reporting of certain types of wounds or other physical injuries pursuant to the court order, warrant, subpoena, summons or similar process
- For the purpose of identifying or locating a suspect, fugitive, material witness or missing person
- Under certain limited circumstances, when you are the victim of a crime
- To a law enforcement official if PHC has a suspicion that your death was the result of criminal conduct including criminal conduct at PHC
- In an emergency in order to report a crime
To Coroners and Medical Examiners: PHC may disclose your health information to coroners and medical examiners for purposes of determining your cause of death or for other duties, as authorized by law.
To Funeral Directors: PHC may disclose your health information to funeral directors consistent with applicable law and, if necessary, to carry out their duties with respect to your funeral arrangements. If necessary to carry out their duties, PHC may disclose your health information prior to, and in reasonable anticipation of, your death.
For Organ, Eye or Tissue Donation: PHC may use or disclose your health information to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement, banking or transplantation of organs, eyes or tissue for the purpose of facilitating the donation and transplantation, if you so desire.
In the Event of a Serious Threat to Health or Safety: PHC may, consistent with applicable law and ethical standards of conduct, disclose your health information if PHC, in good faith, believes that such disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to your health or safety or to the health and safety of the public.
For Specified Government Functions: PHC may make disclosure to authorized federal officials in national security activities or for the provision of protective services to officials.
For Workers Compensation: PHC may release your health information for worker’s compensation or similar programs.
To a Correctional Institution or to a Law Enforcement Official: If you are an inmate of a correctional institution or under the custody of a law enforcement official, we may release health information about you to the institution or official.
To other agencies administering government health benefit programs, as authorized or required by law.
For Immunization Purposes: To a school, about a member who is a student or prospective student of the school, but only if: (1) the information that is disclosed is limited to proof of immunization; (2) the school is required by the State or other law to have such proof of immunization prior to admitting the member; and (3) there is documented agreement by the member or the member’s guardian.
For Disaster Relief Purposes: PHC may make disclosure to a public or private entity authorized by law or by its charter to assist in disaster relief efforts.
For Research Purposes: PHC may use or disclose protected health information for research purposes.