Head Off Costly HIPAA Violations for Minor Patients

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Treating pediatric and adolescent patients can open you up to serious HIPAA violations, and the massive financial penalties they can lead to.

It’s imperative that you master the nuances of exactly when and to whom you can release your minor patients’ personal health information.

Correctly releasing (or not releasing) pediatric and adolescent patient medical and mental personal health information is complex. You are not only dealing with the patient, but with parents, legal guardians, schools, authorities, etc.

HIPAA violations can rack up enormous penalties fast, especially when you add the complexities of treating pediatric and adolescent patients.

The good news is, that will a little expert advice, you can avoid common HIPAA pitfalls related to minor patients. This is where healthcare attorney, Gina L. Campanella, Esq., FACHE, can help.

Here are just a few of the pediatric and adolescent patient HIPAA violations you can avoid by attending this 60-minute online training:

  • How should your practice policies be changed to protect against HIPAA violations related to minor patients?
  • When are pediatrics and adolescent patients eligible (or not eligible) to review their own records?
  • When can minors prevent their parents from viewing their records?
  • Are there particular types of treatment or services that cannot be reported and are protected by law?
  • What role does payment for treatment play in the authorization to access medical information?
  • Does the HIPAA Privacy Rule provide rights for children to be treated without parental consent?
  • When can/must you disclose minor patient protected health information to parents, guardians and/or schools?
  • Do State privacy laws trump Federal laws when treating pediatric and adolescent patients?
  • At what age are you no longer required to report mental health care information to parents?
  • Who can prohibit you from releasing pediatric and adolescent patient mental health or medical information?
  • Do parents have the right to receive a copy of psychotherapy notes about their child’s treatment?
  • Are you required to disclose proof of a child’s immunizations directly to a school?
  • Must older pediatric patients be provided a separate notice of privacy practices?
  • Must you receive a release each time you provide immunization records to schools or gov’t agencies?
  • Are you required to release pediatric or adolescent patient information to law enforcement officials?
  • When does HIPAA consider the parent no longer the personal representative of the child?
  • If parents are divorced, how do you know who is authorized to receive patient information?
  • Can you speak to a pediatric patient’s parents about the child’s mental health status/needs?
  • Can the personal representative of an emancipated minor obtain access to the child’s medical record?
  • After a patient reaches the age of majority or becomes emancipated, can parents still have access to their health information from previous years?
  • Does HIPAA allow you to disclose protected health information (PHI) about a troubled teen to parents?
  • If a child receives emergency medical care without parental consent, can the parent get access to records?
  • In what instances are you NOT required to report treatment of a minor patient (i.e. abuse, STDs, pregnancy, birth control, addiction, etc.)?
  • Can you release findings from pre-employment physicals, drug tests, or fitness-for-duty exam to employers?
  • And much more…

WARNING:  Complaints directly from patients (or their authorized representatives) are the number one reason for HIPAA audits and penalties. It is easier than ever for your patients and their parents to report HIPAA violations directly to the federal Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”). They simply click a button and fill out a few forms online. This means it is more important than ever that you protect yourself from the complexities of treating pediatric and adolescent patients.

Although HIPAA has been around for years, its complexity, the rule’s rapid and regular changes, and the advancement of technology makes it one of the most confusing regulations you must comply with. And, it can be one of the most expensive, if you are found in violation. This is only intensified when treating pediatric and adolescent patients.

Don’t risk getting hit with massive penalties for HIPAA violations related to your minor patients, when you can avoid them.

Don’t wait, sign up for this online training today.

Meet Your Expert

Gina L. Campanella
Esq, FACHERegulatory Compliance Specialist

Ms. Campanella focuses her practice on business law, healthcare regulatory and transactional matters. She assists her clients with transactional services and regulatory compliance consulting, as well as general counsel services to small and large businesses, medical practices, and professional societies. Clients seek her expertise related to HIPAA compliance, contracting, employment agreements, commercial leases, new practice formation, and surgical center licensing and registration. Ms. Campanella is a nationally respected regulatory compliance specialist who dedicates herself to educating professionals nationwide on issues of healthcare business transactions and regulatory compliance.

Ms. Campanella graduated Magna Cum Laude from Seton Hall University with a Masters in Healthcare Administration in 2012 and earned her Juris Doctor from Seton Hall Law in 2005. She is also a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives (New Jersey Chapter), the American Health Lawyers Association, and the New York City Bar. Several of her certifications include earning the status of Certified HIPAA Administrator from the HIPAA Academy and Fellow in the American College of Healthcare Executives. Ms. Campanella is also an Adjunct Professor at the Seton Hall University School of Health and Medical Sciences.

Reviews

Very well covered topic.
Errol Greig
Compliance Officer, Abbeville General Hospital
Very Helpful! Our whole HIPAA privacy team gets these questions fairly frequently, and I was really happy to have the information we have found confirmed as accurate. I also learned a few new things, which have not yet come up, but are very important to know if the situation arises.
Jonathan Ramos
Compliance Specialist, Central Maine Healthcare
The Speaker was very informative and understanding.
karen burns
office manager, Mantachie Rural Health Care Inc