Halloween or HIPAA: Which is Scarier?

HIPAA and the Pandemic

  • Telehealth:
    • On Friday, March 20, 2020, OCR announced it will "exercise its enforcement discretion and will not impose penalties for noncompliance with the regulatory requirements under the HIPAA Rules against covered health care providers in connection with the good faith provision of telehealth during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency."
    • Someday, there will be no public health emergency. What then?
  • COVID testing:
    • -Disclosures when HIPAA applies: On March 24, 2020, OCR issued guidance on how HIPAA covered entities may disclose PHI about an individual who has been infected with or exposed to COVID-19 to law enforcement, paramedics, other first responders, and public health authorities in compliance with HIPAA.
    • Lots of screening testing in which HIPAA does not apply and results are not being reported. But states are pushing back on this lack of disclosure.

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