Serving United Mine Workers of America retirees for over 65 years
What is HIPAA?
HIPAA is a federal law that protects the privacy of your health information. HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. Under HIPAA, your health information generally cannot be shared unnecessarily.
What is PHI?
PHI means protected health information. Protected health information is certain individually identifiable health information related to an individual’s physical or mental health condition.
When can my protected health information be shared?
HIPAA regulations allow health care providers to share your information, under certain circumstances, for your treatment, billing purposes and other limited purposes.
What is a HIPAA Authorization form?
In general, the Funds may not disclose your protected health information to your spouse, family members, friends or others, unless you sign a HIPAA Authorization Form permitting us to do so or the individual receiving your protected health information is your personal representative under HIPAA. When you sign a HIPAA Authorization Form, you are telling the Funds to whom we may release your protected health information. You are not required to complete this form or to authorize others to access your protected health information.
How do I cancel a HIPAA Authorization form?
Just send a written request to the UMWA Health & Retirement Funds stating your intent to cancel the HIPAA Authorization Form. Your cancellation will not apply to uses or disclosures of your protected health information that the Funds may have already made in reliance on your HIPAA Authorization Form.
I have already given a Power of Attorney (POA) to someone. Do I also need to sign a HIPAA Authorization?
Yes, if your power of attorney does not have authority to act on your behalf in making decisions related to your health care or if you want the Funds to share or discuss your protected health information with someone other than your power of attorney.
Can a health care provider share my protected health information for treatment purposes by fax, email or over the phone?
Yes. The HIPAA regulations allow health care providers, under certain circumstances, to share your protected health information for treatment or payment purposes.
What is a business associate?
A business associate is a person or entity who performs certain functions or activities on behalf of a covered entity involving the use or disclosure of protected health information. Business associates are subject to many of the requirements to safeguard your protected health information under HIPAA.