Applegate HomeCare & Hospice understands that your medical and health information is personal. Protecting your health information is important. We follow strict federal and state laws that require us to maintain the confidentiality of your health information.
When you receive care from Applegate, we may use your health information for treating you, billing for services, and conducting our normal business (known as “health care operations”). Examples of how we use your information include:
Treatment – We keep records of the care and services provided to you. Health care providers use these records to deliver quality care to meet your needs. For example, your doctor may share your health information with a specialist who will assist in your treatment. Some health records, including some confidential communications with a mental health professional, some substance abuse treatment records, some genetic test results, and some health information of minors, may have additional restrictions for use and disclosure under state and federal laws.
Payment - We keep billing records that include payment information and documentation of the services provided to you. Your information may be used to obtain payment from you, your insurance company, or another third party. We may also contact your insurance company or third party. We may also contact your insurance company to verify coverage for your care or to notify them of upcoming services that may need prior notice or approval. For example, we may disclose information about the services provided to you to claim and obtain payment from your insurance company or Medicare.
Health Care Operations – We use health information to improve the quality of care, train staff and students, provide customer services, manage costs, conduct required business duties, and make plans to better serve our communities. For example, we may use your health information to evaluate the quality of treatment and services provided by our physicians, nurses, and other health care workers.
- Recommend treatment alternatives;
- Tell you about health services and products that may benefit you;
- Share information with family or friends involved in your care or payment for your care, when approriate;
- Share information with third parties who assist us with treatment, payment, and health care operations. Our business associates must protect your information by following our privacy practices;
- Share information with all members of the team: Doctor, Nurse, Social Worker, CNA, Volunteer, Chaplain;
- Contact you for fundraising purposes (if you do not wish to participate, notify the Applegate Foundation or contact the Privacy Coordinator at the facility where you received the care).
- Contact one of Applegate’s branches found in the “Locations” area of the web site.
- Contact the Privacy Coordinator at the facility where you received care.
These situations are:
- For public health purposes such as reporting communicable diseases, work-related illnesses, or other diseases and injuries permitted by law; report birts or deaths; reporting reactions to drugs and problems with medical devices;
- To protect victims of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence;
- For health oversight activities such as investigations, audits, and inspections;
- For lawsuits and similar proceedings;
- When otherwise required by law;
- When requested by law enforcement as required by law or court order;
- To coroners, medical examiners, and funeral directors;
- For organ and tissue donation;
- For research approved by our review process under strict federal guidelines;
- To reduce or prevent a serious threat to public health and safety;
- For workers’ compensation or other similar program if you are injured at work;
- For specialized government functions such as intelligence and national security.
All other uses and disclosures not described in this notice require your signed authorization. You may revoke your authorization at any time with a written statement.
- Maintain the privacy of your health information;
- Provide this notice that describes the ways we may use and share your health information;
- Follow the terms of the notice currently in effect.
We may reserve the right to make changes to this notice at any time and make the new privacy practices effective for all information we maintain.
- Request restrictions on how we use and share your health information. We will consider all requests for restrictions carefully, but are not required to agree to any restriction that is not otherwise required by law.
- Request that we use a specific telephone number or address to communicate with you.
- * Inspect and copy your health information, including medical and billing records. Fees may apply. Under limited circumstances, we may deny you access to a protion of your health information, and you may request a review of the denial.
- * Request corrections or additions to your health information.
- * Request an accounting of certain disclosures of your health information made by us. The accounting does not include disclosures made for treatment, payment, and health care operations and some disclosures required by law. Your request must state the period of time desires for the accounting, which must be within six years prior to your request and exclude dates prior to April 14, 2003. The first accounting is free, but a fee will apply if more than one request is made ina 12-month period.
- Request a paper copy of this notice even if you agree to receive it electronically.
Requests marked with an asterisk (*) must be made in writing. Contact any Applegate office for the appropriate form for your request.