As Required by the Privacy Regulations Created as a Result of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW HEALTH INFORMATION ABOUT YOU (AS A PATIENT OF THIS PRACTICE) MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED, AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO YOUR INDIVIDUALLY IDENTIFIABLE HEALTH INFORMATION.
PLEASE REVIEW THIS NOTICE CAREFULLY.
A. OUR COMMITMENT TO YOUR PRIVACY
Our practice is dedicated to maintaining the privacy of your individually identifiable health information (IIHI). In conducting our business, we will create records regarding you and the treatment and services we provide to you. We are required by law to maintain the confidentiality of health information that identifies you. We also are required by law to provide you with this notice of our legal duties and the privacy practices that we maintain in our practice concerning your IIHI. By federal and state law, we must follow the terms of the notice of privacy practices that we have in effect at the time.
We realize that these laws are complicated, but we must provide you with the following important information:
- How we may use and disclose your IIHI
- Your privacy rights in your IIHI
- Our obligations concerning the use and disclosure of your IIHI
The terms of this notice apply to all records containing your IIHI that are created or retained by our practice. We reserve the right to revise or amend this Notice of Privacy Practices. Any revision or amendment to this notice will be effective for all of your records that our practice has created or maintained in the past, and for any of your records that we may create or maintain in the future. Our practice will post a copy of our current Notice in our offices in a visible location at all times, and you may request a copy of our most current Notice at any time.
B. IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT THIS NOTICE, PLEASE CONTACT:
Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 1210 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Columbus, GA 31904.
C. WE MAY USE AND DISCLOSE YOUR INDIVIDUALLY IDENTIFIABLE HEALTH INFORMATION (IIHI) IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS
The following categories describe the different ways in which we may use and disclose your IIHI.
1. Treatment. Our practice may use your IIHI to treat you. For example, we may ask you to have laboratory tests (such as blood or urine tests), and we may use the results to help us reach a diagnosis. We might use your IIHI in order to write a prescription for you, or we might disclose your IIHI to a pharmacy when we order a prescription for you. Many of the people who work for our practice - including, but not limited to, our doctors and nurses - may use or disclose your IIHI in order to treat you or to assist others in your treatment. Additionally, we may disclose your IIHI to others who may assist in your care, such as your spouse, children or parents.
2. Payment. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI in order to bill and collect payment for the services and items you may receive from us. For example, we may contact your health insurer to certify that you are eligible for benefits (and for what range of benefits), and we may provide your insurer with details regarding your treatment to determine if your insurer will cover, or pay for, your treatment. We also may use and disclose your IIHI to obtain payment from third parties that may be responsible for such costs, such as family members. Also, we may use your IIHI to bill you directly for services and items.
3. Health Care Operations. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to operate our business. As examples of the ways in which we may use and disclose your information for our operations, our practice may use your IIHI to evaluate the quality of care you received from us, or to conduct cost-management and business planning activities for our practice.
4. Appointment Reminders. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to contact you and remind you of an appointment.
5. Treatment Options. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to inform you of potential treatment options or alternatives.
6. Health-Related Benefits and Services. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI to inform you of health-related benefits or services that may be of interest to you.
7. Release of Information to Family/Friends. Our practice may release your IIHI to a friend or family member that is involved in your care, or who assists in taking care of you. For example, a parent or guardian may ask that a babysitter take their child to the pediatrician's office for treatment of a cold. In this example, the babysitter may have access to this child's medical information.
8. Disclosures Required By Law. Our practice will use and disclose your IIHI when we are required to do so by federal, state or local law.
D. USE AND DISCLOSURE OF YOUR IIHI IN CERTAIN SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES
The following categories describe unique scenarios in which we may use or disclose your identifiable health information:
1. Public Health Risks. Our practice may disclose your IIHI to public health authorities that are authorized by law to collect information for the purpose of:
- maintaining vital records, such as births and deaths
- reporting child abuse or neglect
- preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability
- notifying a person regarding potential exposure to a communicable disease
- notifying a person regarding a potential risk for spreading or contracting a disease or condition
- reporting reactions to drugs or problems with products or devices
- notifying individuals if a product or device they may be using has been recalled
- notifying appropriate government agency(ies) and authority(ies) regarding the potential abuse or neglect of an adult patient (including domestic violence); however, we will only disclose this information if the patient agrees or we are required or authorized by law to disclose this information
- notifying your employer under limited circumstances related primarily to workplace injury or illness or medical surveillance.
2. Health Oversight Activities. Our practice may disclose your IIHI to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law. Oversight activities can include, for example, investigations, inspections, audits, surveys, licensure and disciplinary actions; civil, administrative, and criminal procedures or actions; or other activities necessary for the government to monitor government programs, compliance with civil rights laws and the health care system in general.
3. Lawsuits and Similar Proceedings. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI in response to a court or administrative order, if you are involved in a lawsuit or similar proceeding. We also may disclose your IIHI in response to a discovery request, subpoena, or other lawful process by another party involved in the dispute, but only if we have made an effort to inform you of the request or to obtain an order protecting the information the party has requested.
4. Law Enforcement. We may release IIHI if asked to do so by a law enforcement official:
- Regarding a crime victim in certain situations, if we are unable to obtain the person's agreement
- Concerning a death we believe has resulted from criminal conduct
- Regarding criminal conduct at our offices
- In response to a warrant, summons, court order, subpoena or similar legal process
- To identify/locate a suspect, material witness, fugitive or missing person
- In an emergency, to report a crime (including the location or victim(s) of the crime, or the description, identity or location of the perpetrator)
5. Deceased Patients. Our practice may release IIHI to a medical examiner or coroner to identify a deceased individual or to identify the cause of death. If necessary, we also may release information in order for funeral directors to perform their jobs.
6. Organ and Tissue Donation. Our practice may release your IIHI to organizations that handle organ, eye or tissue procurement or transplantation, including organ donation banks, as necessary to facilitate organ or tissue donation and transplantation if you are an organ donor.
7. Research. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI for research purposes in certain limited circumstances. We will obtain your written authorization to use your IIHI for research purposes except when:
(a)our use or disclosure was approved by an Institutional Review Board or a Privacy Board;
(b) we obtain the oral or written agreement of a researcher that (i) the information being sought is necessary for the research study; (ii) the use or disclosure of your IIHI is being used only for the research and (iii) the researcher will not remove any of your IIHI from our practice; or
(c) the IIHI sought by the researcher only relates to decedents and the researcher agrees either orally or in writing that the use or disclosure is necessary for the research and, if we request it, to provide us with proof of death prior to access to the IIHI of the decedents.
8. Serious Threats to Health or Safety. Our practice may use and disclose your IIHI when necessary to reduce or prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of another individual or the public. Under these circumstances, we will only make disclosures to a person or organization able to help prevent the threat.
9. Military. Our practice may disclose your IIHI if you are a member of U.S. or foreign military forces (including veterans) and if required by the appropriate authorities.
10. National Security. Our practice may disclose your IIHI to federal officials for intelligence and national security activities authorized by law. We also may disclose your IIHI to federal officials in order to protect the President, other officials or foreign heads of state, or to conduct investigations.
11. Inmates. Our practice may disclose your IIHI to correctional institutions or law enforcement officials if you are an inmate or under the custody of a law enforcement official. Disclosure for these purposes would be necessary: (a) for the institution to provide health care services to you, (b) for the safety and security of the institution, and/or (c) to protect your health and safety or the health and safety of other individuals.
12. Workers' Compensation. Our practice may release your IIHI for workers' compensation and similar programs.
E. YOUR RIGHTS REGARDING YOUR IIHI
You have the following rights regarding the IIHI that we maintain about you:
1. Confidential Communications. You have the right to request that our practice communicate with you about your health and related issues in a particular manner or at a certain location. For instance, you may ask that we contact you at home, rather than work. In order to request a type of confidential communication, you must make a written request to Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904 specifying the requested method of contact, or the location where you wish to be contacted. Our practice will accommodate reasonable requests. You do not need to give a reason for your request.
2. Requesting Restrictions. You have the right to request a restriction in our use or disclosure of your IIHI for treatment, payment or health care operations. Additionally, you have the right to request that we restrict our disclosure of your IIHI to only certain individuals involved in your care or the payment for your care, such as family members and friends. We are not required to agree to your request; however, if we do agree, we are bound by our agreement except when otherwise required by law, in emergencies, or when the information is necessary to treat you. In order to request a restriction in our use or disclosure of your IIHI, you must make your request in writing to Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904. Your request must describe in a clear and concise fashion:
(a) the information you wish restricted;
(b) whether you are requesting to limit our practice's use, disclosure or both; and
(c) to whom you want the limits to apply.
3. Inspection and Copies. You have the right to inspect and obtain a copy of the IIHI that may be used to make decisions about you, including patient medical records and billing records, but not including psychotherapy notes. You must submit your request in writing to Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904 in order to inspect and/or obtain a copy of your IIHI. Our practice may charge a fee for the costs of copying, mailing, labor and supplies associated with your request. Our practice may deny your request to inspect and/or copy in certain limited circumstances; however, you may request a review of our denial. Another licensed health care professional chosen by us will conduct reviews.
4. Amendment. You may ask us to amend your health information if you believe it is incorrect or incomplete, and you may request an amendment for as long as the information is kept by or for our practice. To request an amendment, your request must be made in writing and submitted to Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904. You must provide us with a reason that supports your request for amendment. Our practice will deny your request if you fail to submit your request (and the reason supporting your request) in writing. Also, we may deny your request if you ask us to amend information that is in our opinion: (a) accurate and complete; (b) not part of the IIHI kept by or for the practice; (c) not part of the IIHI which you would be permitted to inspect and copy; or (d) not created by our practice, unless the individual or entity that created the information is not available to amend the information.
5. Accounting of Disclosures. All of our patients have the right to request an "accounting of disclosures." An "accounting of disclosures" is a list of certain non-routine disclosures our practice has made of your IIHI for non-treatment or operations purposes. Use of your IIHI as part of the routine patient care in our practice is not required to be documented. For example, the doctor sharing information with the nurse; or the billing department using your information to file your insurance claim. In order to obtain an accounting of disclosures, you must submit your request in writing Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904. All requests for an "accounting of disclosures" must state a time period, which may not be longer than six (6) years from the date of disclosure and may not include dates before April 14, 2003. The first list you request within a 12-month period is free of charge, but our practice may charge you for additional lists within the same 12-month period. Our practice will notify you of the costs involved with additional requests, and you may withdraw your request before you incur any costs.
6. Right to a Paper Copy of This Notice. You are entitled to receive a paper copy of our notice of privacy practices. You may ask us to give you a copy of this notice at any time. To obtain a paper copy of this notice, contact Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904.
7. Right to File a Complaint. If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with our practice or with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. To file a complaint with our practice, Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904. All complaints must be submitted in writing. You will not be penalized for filing a complaint.
8. Right to Provide an Authorization for Other Uses and Disclosures. Our practice will obtain your written authorization for uses and disclosures that are not identified by this notice or permitted by applicable law. Any authorization you provide to us regarding the use and disclosure of your IIHI may be revoked at any time in writing. After you revoke your authorization, we will no longer use or disclose your IIHI for the reasons described in the authorization. Please note, we are required to retain records of your care.
Again, if you have any questions regarding this notice or our health information privacy policies, please contact Privacy Officer, Lane Dermatology & Dermatologic Surgery, 2301 Brookstone Centre Parkway, Suite 200, Columbus, GA 31904.
For your initial visit, please plan to arrive 15 minutes early in order to complete history regarding your medical history. Please bring information about your current medications so that we may accurately record this.
In the event that you are unable to keep your scheduled appointment, please notify the office at least 24 hours in advance - we greatly appreciate this courtesy as other patients who need to be seen can be scheduled.
Patient Rights and Responsibilities:
THE PATIENT HAS THE RIGHT TO:
- All patients will be treated with dignity, compassion, and respect as individuals. Their privacy will be protected and employees will seek to honor their personal and religious beliefs.
- Each patient has the right to know the indentity and professional status of individuals providing service to them and to know which physician or other practitioner is primarily responsible for their care. Each patient is responsible for paying for his/her portion of the costs associated with their care.
- Each patient will receive information regarding his/her insurance benefits and the cost of their care. Each patient is responsible for paying for his/her portion of the costs associated with their care.
- All medical records are kept confidential. Information will not be released without the patient’s consent unless authorized by law (i.e. State public health reporting). Each patient has the right to information in their medical record and may request a copy of their records.
- Patients will be informed of all outcomes of care, including any injuries caused by the medical care.
- Patients will be involved in all decisions about their care. Discussions with patients will include the necessity, appropriateness, and risks of proposed care, surgery, or procedure as well as discussions of treatment alternatives.
- If a patient has undergone a surgical procedure, he/she will be given written instructions on the postoperative care of the wound and instructions on how to contact the physician in the event that they experience any problems after hours.
- All patients have a right to have their health care provided by staff that has maintained current professional knowledge through ongoing education.
- The diagnosis is based on findings of the current history and physical examination and is appropriate and timely.
- Treatment is consistent with clinical impression or working diagnosis.
- Consultations or referrals are timely and appropriate.
- There is an absence of clinically unnecessary diagnostic or therapeutic procedures.
- Follow-up of findings and tests are appropriate and timely.
- Each patient will be informed of the policy on suggestions, complaints and grievances.
If a patient is judged incompetent under applicable State health and safety laws by a court of proper jurisdiction, the rights of the patient are exercised by the person appointed under State law to act on the patient’s behalf.
If a State court has not judged a patient incompetent, any legal representative designated by the patient in accordance with State laws may exercise the patient’s rights to the extent allowed by State law.
THE PATIENT’S RESPONSIBILITIES ARE:
- Be considerate of other patients and personnel and for assisting in the control of noise and other distractions.
- Respecting that this is a smoke free campus.
- Respecting the property of others and the practice/facility.
- Reporting whether he or she clearly understands the planned course of treatment and what is expected of him/her.
- Keeping appointments and, when unable to do so for any reason, notifying the practice/facility.
- Providing care givers with the most accurate and complete information regarding present complaints, past illnesses and hospitalizations, medications, unexpected changes in the patient’s condition or any other patient related health matters.
- Observing prescribed rules of the practice/facility during his or her stay and treatment and, if instructions are not followed, forfeiting the right of care at the practice/facility and accepting responsibility for the outcome.
- Promptly fulfilling his or her financial obligations to the practice/facility.
- Payment to the practice/facility for copies of medical records as requested by the patient.
- Identifying any patient safety concerns.
The mission of this organization is to provide the highest attainable quality service to persons seeking medical care regardless of race, creed, origin or status. Every patient is unique and we respect and recognize their individuality, dignity, and worth as a person and the right to participate in their care. Our mission requires a commitment to quality, safety, and education from the facility’s medical staff and employees. We believe that quality of care depends on effective working relationships and open communication with medical staff, other allied health disciplines, and the community. Our commitment of quality and patient care includes the provision of educational opportunities for all medical, nursing, and support personnel; the implementation of research findings available in providing care; and the application of principles and processes of democratic management.
SCOPE OF SERVICES
Lane Dermatologic Surgery Center, LLC provides single specialty services deemed appropriate and approved by the Governing Body. Procedures scheduled in the operating room may be elective or urgent. The medical staff is comprised of two Dermatologic Surgeons. Each physician is on call for weekday, holiday, after hours, urgent and emergency care needs. Patients appropriate for treatment are at least 18 years of age. Hours of operation are weekdays 7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. however procedures are not normally scheduled every day.
Lane Dermatologic Surgery Center, LLC provides services for persons requiring surgical intervention for treatment of complex or difficult skin cancers, melanoma excision, advanced reconstruction, and cosmetic dermatologic surgery. Local and monitored conscious sedation is provided based on the needs of the patient and the procedure. The facility accepts payments from Medicare, private carriers and managed care organizations.
The patient population is limited to adults with a moderate population of geriatric patients. The majority of patients reside within a 50-mile radius of the facility. Patient needs are identified through ongoing assessment and analysis of services monitored by the Quality Management Committee and the Governing Body.
Staffing is comprised of one registered nurse and medical/surgical assistants experienced in Dermatologic Surgery. All employees work under the direct supervision of a medical doctor who is a member of the medical staff of the facility.