NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES Effective Date: March 1, 2010
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.
Solara Medical Supplies, Inc./ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy is committed to protecting your privacy and understands the importance of safeguarding your personal health information. We are required by federal law to maintain the privacy of health information that identifies you or that could be used to identify you (known as “Protected Health Information”). We also are required to disclose our privacy practices with respect to Protected Health Information that we collect and maintain. This Notice describes your rights under federal law and state law, where applicable, relating to your Protected Health Information. Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy is required by federal law to abide by this Notice. However, we reserve the right to change the privacy practices outlined in the Notice and make the new practices effective for all Protected Health Information that we maintain. Should we make such a change, we will display the revised Notice at our pharmacies and make it available to you upon request.
USES AND DISCLOSURES OF PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION
Routine Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information For Treatment, Payment, or Health Care Operations
Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy is permitted under federal law to use and disclose Protected Health Information without your specific permission for three types of routine purposes: treatment, payment, and health care operations.
Your pharmacist will use or disclose your Protected Health Information as described below. Your Protected Health Information may be used and disclosed by your pharmacist, pharmacy staff, and others outside of the pharmacy that are involved in your care and treatment. Set out below are examples of the uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information we are permitted to make for these routine purposes. While this list is not meant to be exhaustive, it should give you an idea of the everyday uses and disclosures “behind the scenes” that are essential to the care you receive.
Treatment. Your Protected Health Information can be used and disclosed by Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy for treatment purposes. For example, your Protected Health Information will be used by our pharmacists to fill your prescription and to counsel you about the appropriate use of your medication.
We also may use and disclose your Protected Health Information to provide you with information regarding possible alternative treatment options and other health-related benefits and services that we believe might interest you.
For example, we may send you reminders to refill generic alternatives for your prescription, or information about new or updated products that may enhance or improve your treatment.
Payment. Your Protected Health Information can be used and disclosed for payment purposes. For example, we may communicate your Protected Health Information to your insurance company so that it can process payment for your prescription.
Health Care Operations. Your Protected Health Information can be used and disclosed to allow us to conduct health care operations, which generally are the administrative activities that we undertake in order to operate our pharmacies. For example, we may use your Protected Health Information to evaluate the performance of our pharmacists and to engage in other quality assurance activities.
Other Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy is Permitted or Required to Make Without Your Authorization.
In general, we are required to obtain your specific written authorization to use or disclose your Protected Health Information for purposes unrelated to treatment, payment, or health care operations. However, there are exceptions to this general rule under which we are permitted or required to make certain uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information without authorization. These situations include:
Required by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. We may be required to disclose your Protected Health Information to the Secretary of Health and Human Services to investigate or determine our compliance with the federal privacy law.
Public Health. We may disclose your Protected Health Information for public health activities, such as disclosures to a public health authority or other government agency that is permitted by law to collect or receive the information (e.g., the Food and Drug Administration).
Abuse or Neglect. If you have been a victim of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence, we may disclose your Protected Health Information to the government agency authorized to receive such information.
Health Oversight. We may disclose Protected Health Information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law, such as: civil or criminal investigations; inspections; licensure or disciplinary actions; or other activities necessary for appropriate oversight of retail pharmacies, governmental health benefit programs, or compliance with laws.
Judicial and Administrative Proceedings. We may disclose Protected Health Information in response to a court or agency order, and in some cases, in response to a subpoena or other lawful process not accompanied by a court order.
Law Enforcement. We may disclose Protected Health Information for law enforcement purposes, such as providing information to the police about the victim of a crime.
Coroners, Medical Examiners, and Funeral Directors. We may disclose Protected Health Information to a coroner, medical examiner, or funeral director if it is needed to carry out their duties.
Research. We may disclose your Protected Health Information to researchers when the research is being conducted under established protocols to ensue the privacy of your information.
Serious Threat to Health or Safety. Your Protected Health Information may be disclosed if we believe it is necessary to prevent a serious and imminent threat to the public health to prevent or lessen the threat.
Specialized Government Functions. We may disclose Protected Health Information for purposes related to military or national security concerns, such as for the purpose of a determination by the Department of Veterans Affairs of your eligibility for benefits.
Inmates. Under certain circumstances, we may disclose the Protected Health Information of inmates of a correctional institution.
Workers’ Compensation. Your Protected Health Information may be disclosed to comply with workers’ compensation laws and other similar programs.
Other Restrictions on Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information
The uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information described above are permitted or required by federal law. Some states have laws that require additional privacy safeguards above and beyond the federal requirements. Thus, if a state law is more restrictive regarding uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information or provides you with greater rights with respect to your Protected Health Information, Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy will comply with the state law. If your state has enacted a more stringent law, we have attached as an addendum to this Notice our privacy practices regarding your Protected Health Information in that state.
Disclosures to Other Parties for Conducting Permitted Activities
Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy may conduct the above-described activities ourselves, or we may use non-Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy entities to perform those operations. In those instances where we disclose your Protected Health Information to a third party acting on our behalf, we will protect your Protected Health Information through an appropriate privacy agreement.
Other Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information Based Upon Your Written Authorization
Other uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information, not described above, will be made only with your written authorization. You may revoke this authorization at any time, in writing, except to the extent that we have taken action in reliance on the authorization.
As a patient, you have certain rights regarding your Protected Health Information. We may ask that you submit a written request to exercise your patient rights. The rights include:
You have the right to request a restriction on certain uses and disclosures of your Protected Health Information. This means that you may ask us not to use or disclose any part of your Protected Health Information for purposes of treatment, payment or health care operations. You may also request that any part of your Protected Health Information not be disclosed to family members or friends who may be involved in your care. Your request must state the specific restriction to apply. Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy is not required to agree to such a restriction. If we do agree, we will abide by your restriction unless we need to use your Protected Health Information to provide emergency treatment. In addition, we may elect to terminate the restriction at any time.
You have the right to request to receive information from us by an alternative means or at an alternative location if you believe it would enhance your privacy. For example, you may request that we send written communications to an alternative address. We will attempt to accommodate all reasonable requests and will not request an explanation from you as to the basis for your request.
You have the right to inspect and copy your Protected Health Information. If you would like to see or copy your Protected Health Information, we are required to provide you access to your Protected Health Information for inspection and copying within 30 days after receipt of your request (60 days if the information is stored off-site). We may charge you a reasonable fee to cover duplicating costs. In addition, there may be situations where we may decide to deny your request for access. For example, we may deny your request if we believe the disclosure will endanger your life or health or that of another person. Depending on the circumstances of the denial, you may have a right to have this decision reviewed.
You have the right to amend your Protected Health Information. This means you may request an amendment of your Protected Health Information in our records for as long as we maintain this information. We will respond to your request within 60 days (with up to a 30-day extension, if needed). We may deny your request if, for example, we determine that your Protected Health Information is accurate and complete. If we deny your request, we will send you a written explanation and allow you to submit a written statement of disagreement.
You have the right to receive an accounting of certain disclosures we have made of your Protected Health Information. An accounting is a record of the disclosures that have been made of Protected Health Information. This right generally applies to non-routine disclosures, i.e., for purposes other than treatment, payment, or health care operations, as described in this Notice, made in the six-year period prior to your request (although you are free to request an accounting for a shorter period). We are required to provide the accounting within 60 days (with one 30-day extension, if needed) and to provide one accounting free of charge in any 12-month period. (For more frequent requests, a reasonable fee may be charged.)
You have the right to obtain a paper copy of this notice from Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy.
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you have the right to report such alleged violations to Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy, and we will promptly investigate the matter. You may file a complaint with Solara Medical Supplies/ dba Imperial Beach Pharmacy by contacting our Corporate Privacy Officer, Tod Robinson. Rest assured we will not retaliate against you in any way for filing a complaint about our privacy practices. You may also contact the Secretary of Health and Human Services.
You may contact our HIPAA Compliance/Legal Department at (800) 423-0896 for further information about the complaint process or any other information covered by this Notice. This notice is effective on April 14, 2003.
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED OR DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN ACCESS THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.
At Solara Medical Supplies, we are committed to using your health information responsibly and in compliance with the law. This Notice of Privacy Practices, which is required by federal law, is intended to help you understand how we collect, use and disclose your health information.
WHO MUST ABIDE BY THE NOTICE
Solara Medical Supplies, Inc. and its related entities, their employees, staff and other personnel:
UNDERSTANDING YOUR PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION
Your health information includes information on your diagnosis, treatment, medical supplies needed, prescriptions and future plan of treatment. These records are used to plan your care and to communicate with other healthcare providers about your care.
OUR LEGAL DUTIES
* We are required by law to maintain the privacy of your health information and to provide you a copy of this Notice.
* We are required to abide by the terms of this Notice until we adopt a new one.
* We are required to post our current Notice on our web site: www.SolaraMedicalSupplies.com.
Although your health record is the physical property of Solara Medical Supplies, the information belongs to you. By law, you have the following rights:
You have the right to access your health information in our medical records, subject to certain limitations. Please make this request in writing to our Privacy Officer. Your request must be signed and it should specifically list the information you want copied (i.e. “I want copies of my records from June 1, 2003 – October 31, 2003.”). We may charge a fee for the cost of providing the records.
You have the right to obtain an accounting of certain disclosures of your information. This is a list of the times we have given your information to others after April 14, 2003 for purposes other than treatment, payment and healthcare operations or releases pursuant to a signed authorization. Your request should be in writing and sent to the Privacy Officer. We may charge a fee for providing more than the first list. The right to receive this information is subject to certain exceptions, restrictions and limitations.
You have the right to ask us to communicate with you at a special address or by special means. We will not ask for an explanation. We will agree to reasonable requests which are made request in writing to our Privacy Officer.
You have the right to ask us, in writing, to restrict how we use or disclose your health information. We will consider your request, but we are not required to agree to it.
You have the right to ask us to amend your health information you believe is incorrect or incomplete. You must make this request in writing to the Privacy Officer and explain the reason you believe the information is not correct or complete. We may deny your request if we did not create the information, if it is not part of the records we use to make decisions about you, if it is not something you would be permitted to inspect or copy, or if it is complete and accurate.
We may ask for your written authorization if we plan to use or disclose your health information for reasons not covered in this Notice. If you authorize us to use or disclose your information, you have the right to revoke the authorization at any time, in writing, unless we have released information prior to receiving your revocation. For more information about authorizations, please contact our Privacy Officer.
We may ask for your written authorization if we plan to use or disclose your health information for reasons not covered in this Notice. If you authorize us to use or disclose your information, you have the right to revoke the authorization at any time, in writing, unless we have released information prior to receiving your revocation. For more in formation about authorizations, please contact our Privacy Officer.
WE MAY USE AND DISCLOSE YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION IN THE FOLLOWING WAYS
Solara Medical Supplies is required to inform you of how we may use your health information. We may use your health information for a number of purposes, including treatment, payment and healthcare operations. For each purpose, we have written a brief explanation.
Service and Treatment – As it pertains to Solara Medical Supplies, treatment means providing you with medications, supplies and durable medical equipment services as ordered by your physician. Treatment also includes coordination and consultation with your physician and other healthcare providers.
Payment – We will use and disclose your information as necessary to obtain payment for the services and supplies we provide to you.
Friends and Family – We may disclose to a family member, other relative, close personal friend or any other person identified by you, the health information directly relevant to such person’s involvement with your care or payment related to your health care.
Healthcare Operations – We may use or disclose your health information for activities that are needed to operate Solara Medical Supplies, such as compliance, quality assurance, business planning and management, certain marketing activities and general administrative activities.
Information to Patients – We may use your health information to provide you with information about treatment options or other health-related services.
Required by Law or Law Enforcement – We may disclose your health information to others as required by law. This may include reporting information to government agencies that monitor the health care system. This also includes providing information to locate a suspect, fugitive, missing person or in connection with suspected criminal activity. We may also disclose information in response to court orders, subpoenas or other lawful requests.
Public Health and Oversight – We may disclose health information to agencies authorized by law to conduct health oversight activities, including audits, investigations, licensing and similar activities.
To Report Abuse – We may disclose health information when the information relates to a victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence.
Other Specialized Purposes – We may disclose your health information for a number of other specialized purposes. We will only disclose as much information as is necessary for the purpose. Under certain circumstances, we may disclose information to avert a serious threat or harm.
Business Associates – We may disclose health information to attorneys, accountants and other non-employees acting on behalf of Solara Medical Supplies. These individuals or entities are called Business Associates and they are asked to sign written contracts agreeing to safeguard the confidentiality of your information.
CHANGES TO THIS NOTICE
Please be advised that Solara Medical Supplies reserves the right to change the terms of its Notice of Privacy Practices and to make those changes applicable to all health information maintained at that time. Any new or revised Notices are available upon request or by visiting www.SolaraMedicalSupplies.com.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, TO REPORT A PROBLEM, OR FILE A COMPLAINT
Solara Medical Supplies
Attn: Privacy Officer
720 Hwy 75
Imperial Beach, CA 91932
Toll Free (800) 423-0826
If you think your privacy has been violated, you may also file a complaint with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.
To file a complaint with CHAP (Community Health Accreditation Program), contact 1-800-656-9656.
We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.
Solara Medical Supplies
Notice of Privacy Practices