Wednesday, June 6, 2012

OCR Releases a “Right to Access” Memo CONSUMER HIPAA PRIVACY

Leon Rodriguez, Director of the Office for Civil Rights released a right to access memorandum educating consumers on their right to access their medical information at ONC’s “Patient Access Summit.” The HIPAA Privacy Rule has always permitted this right to access, but many consumers have faced barriers in getting their health information. It is vitally important that consumers understand this right which will enable them to engage more fully in their health care. At the summit, Leon reinforced that it is a consumer’s legal right to obtain a copy of their health formation and his office is committed to informing the public of that right and enforcing it at HIPAA covered entities.

Visit the OCR website at
 to obtain a copy of the memo and for videos, pamphlets, frequently asked questions and other guidance material to help consumers understand their rights under HIPAA.

Your Health Information Is Protected By Federal Law

Most of us believe that our medical and other health information is private and should be protected, and we want to know who has this information. The Privacy Rule, a Federal law, gives you rights over your health information and sets rules and limits on who can look at and receive your health information. The Privacy Rule applies to all forms of individuals' protected health information, whether electronic, written, or oral. The Security Rule, a Federal law that protects health information in electronic form, requires entities covered by HIPAA to ensure that electronic protected health information is secure

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