Summary of Agency’s Notice of Privacy Practices

This notice briefly describes how your “Protected Health Information” (PHI) may be used and disclosed and how you can get a copy of this information.  This is intended to summarize for you the longer, more detailed form of notice that is attached.  You should review both carefully.

At the Visiting Nurse Association of Greater Lowell, Inc., your privacy is a priority.  We follow federal and state guidelines, whichever provides the most protection, to maintain the confidentiality of your PHI.  We use your PHI to provide your home care services, to obtain payment for our services, and to conduct our  business known as health care operations.

We may also use your PHI to tell you about health benefits and services, to communicate with other health care providers, family or friends involved in your care, and to communicate with associates who carry out treatment, payment, or health care operations on our behalf.  These  associates must follow our strict privacy rules.  We may also contact you for Agency fundraising, but you have the option of  asking us not to contact you for fundraising or any other activity other than your health care.

There are limited times when we are permitted or required to disclose your PHI without your signed permission.  These situations include public health activities, if required by law, and for specialized government functions.  Other uses and disclosures in this category are listed in the attached long form of this notice.  All other uses and disclosures may only be done with your signed authorization.  You may revoke your authorization at any time.

You have the right to request that we restrict how we use or disclose your PHI.  We may not be able to comply with all requests, and we will advise you of that when you make your request.  You also have the right to tell us how you want us to contact you, to see and copy your PHI, and to request additions or corrections, and receive an accounting of how we disclosed your PHI, except for our payment, treatment and operations, which does not require such an accounting.  

To obtain more information, or if you have a complaint or concern regarding the use of your PHI, you may call or write our Privacy  Officer.  The contact information is listed in the attached Notice.  All complaints will be thoroughly investigated.  You may also file a complaint with the Secretary of Health and Human Services in Washington, D.C.

REFERENCE

Notice of Privacy Practices

p&p/sum.2/18/03