We maintain protocols to ensure the security and confidentiality of your personal information. We have physical security in our building, passwords to protect databases, compliance audits, and virus/intrusion detection software. Within our practice, access to your information is limited to those who need it to perform their jobs.
At St. Louis Eye Care Specialists, LLC, we are committed to treating and using protected health information about you responsibly. This notice of privacy policies describes the personal information we collect, and how and when we use or disclose that information. It also describes your rights as they relate to your protected health information.
Understanding Your Health
Each time you visit St. Louis Eye Care Specialists, LLC, a record of your visit is made. Typically, this record contains your symptoms, examination and test results, diagnoses, treatment, and a plan for future care or treatment. This information, often referred to as your health or medical record, serve as a:
- Basis for planning your care and treatment,
- Means of communication among the many health professionals who contribute to your care,
- Legal documents describing the care you received,
- Means by which you or a third-party payer can verify that services billed were actually provided,
- Tool in education health professionals,
- Source of data for medical research,
- Source of information for public health officials,
- Source of data for our planning and marketing.
Understanding what is in your health information helps you to:
- Ensure its accuracy: better understand who, what, when, and why others may access your health information;
- and makes more informed decisions when authorizing disclosure.
Your Health Information Rights
Although your health record is the physical property of St. Louis Eye Care Specialists, LLC, the information belongs to you. You have the right to:
- Obtain a paper copy of this notice of privacy policies upon request.
- Inspect and obtain a copy of your record. (Reasonable copy fees apply in accordance with state law)
- Amend your health record.
- Obtain an accounting of disclosures of your health information.
- Request confidential communications of your health information.
- Request a restriction on certain uses and disclosures of your information.(we are not required by law to agree to a requested restriction).
Our practice is required to:
- Maintain the privacy of your health information,
- Provide you with this notice as to our legal duties and privacy practice with respect to information we collect and maintain about you
- Abide by the terms of this notice
- Notify you of if we are unable to agree to a request restriction
- Accommodate reasonable requests you may have to communicate your health information.
We reserve the right to change our practices and to make the new provision effective for all protected health information we maintain. We will keep a posted copy of the most current notice in our facility. In addition, each time you visit our facility for treatment, you may obtain a copy of the current notice in effect upon request./p>
We will not use or disclose your health information in a manner other than described in the section regarding examples of disclosures for treatment, payment, and health operations, without your written authorization, which you may revoke as provided (except to the extent that action has already been taken.)
For more information or to report a problem:
If you have questions and would like additional information, you may contact our practices privacy officer, Laura Reiner, at (314) 997-3937.
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you can either file a complaint with Laura Reiner, or with the office of civil rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (OCR). There will be no retaliation for filing a complaint with either our practice or OCR. The address for the OCR is as follows:
Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Ave S.W.
Room 509F, HHH Building
Washington, D.C. 20201
Examples of Disclosures for treatment, payment, and health operations:
We will use our health information for treatment.
- Information obtained by a nurse, physician, or other member of your health care team will be recorded in your record and used to determine the course of treatment that should work best for you. Your physician will document in your record his or her expectations in the members of your health care team. Members of your health care team will then record the actions they took and their observations. In that way, the physician will know how you are responding to treatment.
- We will also provide your other physician(s) or subsequent health care provider(s) (when applicable) with copies of various reports that should assist them in treating you.
We will use your health information for payment.
- A bill may be sent to you or a third-party payer. The information on or accompanying the bill may include information that identifies you, as well as your diagnosis, procedures, and supplies used.
We will use your health information for regular health operations.
- Members of the medical staff, the risk or quality improvement manager, or members of the quality improvement team may use information in your health record to access the care and outcomes in your case and others like it. This information will then be used in an effort to continually improve the quality and effectiveness of the healthcare and service we provide.
- Business Associates: There are some services provided in our organization through contacts with business associates. Examples include physician services in the emergency department and radiology, certain laboratory tests, and a transcript service we use to transfer dictated patient care into the medical record. Due to the nature of business associates’ services, they must receive your health information in order to perform the jobs we’ve asked them to do. To protect your health information, however, when these services are contracted we require the business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.
- Research: We may disclose information to researchers when their research has been approved by an institutional review board that has reviewed the research proposal and established protocols to ensure the privacy of your health information.
- Funeral Directors: We may disclose health information to funeral directors to carry out their duties consistent with applicable law.
- Organ Procurement Organizations: Consistent with applicable law, we may disclose health information to organ procurement organizations or other entitles engages in the procurement, banking, or transplantation, of organs for the purpose of the tissue donation and transplantation.
- Food and Drug Administration (FDA): We may disclose to the FDA health information relative to adverse events with respect to food, supplements, product and product defects, or post marketing surveillance information to enable product recalls, repairs, or replacement.
- Workers Compensation: We may disclose health information to the extent authorized by and necessary to comply with laws relating to workers compensation or other similar programs established by law.
- Public Health: As required by law, we may disclose your health information to public health or legal authorities charged with preventing or controlling disease, injury, or disability.
- Appointment Reminders: We may contact you or a family member at the phone number you have provided to us as a reminder that you have an appointment.
- Marketing: We may contact you to provide information about treatment alternatives or other health–related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.
- Directory: Unless you notify us that you object, we will use your name, location in the facility, and general condition for our directory purposes. This information may be provided to members of your family and to other people who ask for you by name.
- Notification: We may use or disclose information to notify as assist in notifying a family member or personal representative (or other person responsible for your care) of your location and general
- Communication with family: Health professionals, using there best judgment, may disclose to a family member, other relative, or close personal friend (or other person you identify) health information relevant to that persons involvement in your care or payment related to your care.