Learn to identify and apply differing and conflicting rules with respect to the specific health care practitioner, the specific health care facility practice and the emerging rules and regulations for electronic medical records confidentiality, security and disposition. In addition to these clinical requirements of a specific profession, additional state laws set forth the content and retention of other types of records, other than clinical records of a patient, that are also kept by the professional, such as supervisory agreements with other professionals subordinate to them as well as their own unique record content requirements.
One area covered specifically about electronic record recognizes that while psychotherapy and mental health services are ideal treatments to offer over the internet, that is, by simultaneous audio-visual transmission between the doctor and the patient, the risks of breaches of confidentiality also vastly increase. And when the successful doctor-patient relationship is over, how does the health care practitioner providing a mental health service dispose of these electronic records?
In addition to state law requirements for the specific retention and disposition of clinical medical records, how long should the health care practitioner retain records for the possible, future defense of a malpractice claim for negligent treatment? Or to retain such medical records when the patient is a minor? Or to defend a possible complaint and disciplinary action by a state regulatory agency which could revoke the professional license of the practitioner?
Finally, while HIPAA provides for broad protections of privacy, state laws govern the confidentiality of the information provided in the context of a doctor-patient relationship. Tour the applicable evidentiary rules that cover confidentiality under state law.
In the complex environment of a medical office or health care facility, with many different health care practitioners, individual practitioners and directors at those offices and facilities may be confused on how long to retain and whether to dispose of medical records.
Does having digital records require records to be kept indefinitely or does it simply allow it? Differing and even conflicting sources of requirements exist for the retention and disposition of medical records, which may vary based upon the specific health care practitioner. With much of medical records moving to an electronic format, special rules now exist regarding the confidentiality, security, retention and disposition of electronic medical records.
Once information has been recorded in the patient medical record, what rules apply to prevent a release of private information beyond what is mandated by HIPAA? Take a tour of the most common legal rules requiring patient confidentiality as an evidentiary privilege under state law.
Mark R Brengelman has worked as the assigned counsel to numerous health professions licensure boards as an Assistant Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Moving to private practice, he now helps private clients in health care in a wide variety of contexts.
He graduated with both Bachelor's and Master's degrees in philosophy from Emory University in Atlanta. He then earned a Juris Doctorate from the University Of Kentucky College Of Law. In 1995, he became an assistant attorney general and focused in the area of administrative and professional law where he represented multiple boards as general counsel and prosecuting attorney.
Mr. Brengelman is a frequent participant in continuing education and has been a presenter for over twenty national and state organizations and private companies, including webinars and in-person seminars. These national and state organizations include the Kentucky Bar Association, the Kentucky Office of the Attorney General, and the National Attorneys General Training and Research Institute.