We respect our legal obligation to keep health information that might identify you private. We are obligated by law to provide you with notice of our privacy practices and abide by the policies in it. This notice describes how we protect your health information and what rights you have regarding it.
Treatment, Payment, and Health Care Operations
The most common reasons we would use or disclose your health information is for treatment, payment, or business operations. We routinely use and disclose your medical information within the office on a daily basis. We do not need specific permission to use or disclose your medical information in the following matter, although you have the right to request that we do not
Examples of how we might use or disclose health information for treatment purses might include:
- Setting up or changing appointments including leaving messages containing no information about your personal health information with those at your home or office who may answer the phone or leaving messages on answering machines, voice mails, text or emails;
- calling your name out in a reception room environment;
- prescribing glasses, contact lenses, or medications as well as relaying this information to suppliers by phone, fax, or other electronic means including initial prescriptions and requests from suppliers for refills;
- notifying you that your ophthalmic goods are ready, including leaving messages containing no personal health information with those at your home or office who may answer the phone, or leaving messages on answering machines, voice mails, text or emails;
- referring you to another doctor for care not provided by this office;
- obtaining copies of health information from doctors you have seen before us; discussing your care with you directly or with family or friends you have inferred or agreed may listen to 10 Information about your health;
- sending you postcards or letters or leaving messages containing no personal health information with those at your home who may answer the phone or on answering machines, voice mails, text or emails reminding you it is time for continued care;
- at your request, we can provide you with a copy of your medical records via secured fax, secured email, secured patient portal, or printed copies delivered in person or through the U.S. Mail.
Examples of how we might use or disclose health information for payment purposes might include:
- Asking you about your vision or medical insurance plans or other sources of payment:
- preparing and sending bills to your insurance provider or to you;
- providing any information required by third-party payors in order to ensure payment for services rendered to you;
- sending notices of payment due on your account to the person designated as a responsible party or head of household on your account with fee explanations that could include procedures performed and for what diagnosis: collecting unpaid balances either ourselves or through a collection agency, attorney, or district attorney's office. At the patient's request, we may not disclose to a health plan or health care operation information related to care that you have paid for out of pocket. This only applies to those encounters related to the care you want to be restricted and only to the extent of a disclosure not otherwise required by law.
Examples of how we might use or disclose health information for business operation5 might include:
- Financial or billing audits;
- internal quality assurance programs; participation in managed care plans; defense of legal matters; business planning