Frequently Asked Questions

Most frequently asked questions fit into three categories: basic health privacy concerns, HIPAA or what you can do. We’ve arranged this site to reflect that breakdown.

The Basic Health Privacy FAQs

  • What information can be found in my health record?
  • Who has access to my health records?
  • “Can my personal health information be used and disclosed without any notice to me or without my informed consent at the time of treatment?”
  • Can my insurer or employer get my medical records without my permission?
  • What is a “self-insured employer”?
  • I thought I signed a Privacy Notice at my doctor’s office giving consent to use my information. What’s in that Privacy Notice?
  • Can I prevent my doctor from reporting a certain procedure to my insurance company?
  • Are my prescriptions private?

HIPAA Related FAQs

  • What is HIPAA?
  • How did the Amended HIPAA Rule eliminate my right to medical privacy?
  • Will drug companies be able to find out what medications I take for marketing purposes?
  • Will drug companies will be able to find out about my health problems and market new medications or disease management programs to me?
  • Will the rule prevent me from picking up a spouse’s or neighbor’s prescriptions?
  • If a friend of mine loses consciousness and I take him to the emergency room, will the physician be able to tell me what’s going on?
  • If I lose consciousness and am taken to an emergency room in Alaska, will the physician be able to access my electronic medical records?
  • Do the rules allow teenagers to keep their medical information secret from their parents?
  • Will I be able to find out whether a friend or relative is in the hospital?
  • Can hospital employees see my medical records?

What Can You Do?

  • How can I protect the privacy of my health records?
  • What can I do if I think my medical privacy has been violated?
  • How can I prove that my medical privacy was violated?
  • Should I have a copy of my medical records?