Privacy Policy

This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed by Spine Specialty Center and how you can get access to this information. Please review this document carefully.

Your Rights

The following is a brief summary of your rights. A more detailed description of each right is also included in this document.

  • Get a copy of your paper or electronic health record
  • Request correction of your paper or electronic
  • health record
  • Request confidential communication
  • Ask us to limit the information we share
  • Get a list of those with whom we’ve shared your
  • information
  • Get a copy of this privacy notice
  • Choose someone to act for you
  • File a complaint if you believe your privacy rights have been violated

Our Uses and Disclosures

Spine Specialty Center may use and share your information as we:

  • Treat you
  • Comply with the law
  • Address workers’ compensation, law enforcement, and other government requests
  • Respond to lawsuits and legal actions

A Word about Federal and State Law

Federal and state laws require Spine Specialty Center to protect your medical information and federal law requires us to describe to you how we handle that information. When federal and state privacy laws are different and conflict, and the state law is more protective of your information or provides you with greater access to your information, then we will follow state law.

Your Rights

When it comes to your health information, you have certain rights. This section explains your rights and some of Spine Specialty Center’s responsibilities to help you.

Get an electronic or paper copy of your medical record

  • You can ask to see or get an electronic or paper copy of your medical records and other health information we have about you. If you would like, we also can send this information in either paper or electronic form to another person you identify in your request.
  • We will provide a copy or a summary of your health information, usually within 30 days of your request.
  • We may charge a reasonable, cost-based fee.

Ask Spine Specialty Center to correct your medical record

  • You can ask us to correct health information about you that you think is incorrect or incomplete.
  • We may say “no” to your request, but we’ll tell you why.

Request confidential communications

  • You can ask us to contact you in a specific way (for example, home or office phone) or to send mail to a different address.
  • We will say “yes” to all reasonable requests.

Your Information.

Ask Spine Specialty Center to limit what we use or share

  • You can ask us not to use or share certain health information for treatment, payment, or Spine Specialty Center’s operations. We are not required to agree to your request, and we may say “no” if it would be harmful or compromise your care.
  • If you pay for a service or health care item out-of-pocket in full, you can ask us not to share that information for the purpose of payment or our operations with your health insurer. We will say “yes” unless a law requires us to share that information.

Get a list of those with whom we’ve shared information

  • You can ask for a list (accounting) of the times we’ve shared your health information.
  • We will include all disclosures except for those about treatment, payment, and health care operations, and certain other disclosures (such as any you asked us to make). We’ll provide one accounting a year for free but will charge a reasonable, cost-based fee if you ask for another one within 12 months.

Get a copy of this privacy notice

  • You can ask for a paper copy of this notice at any time, even if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically. Spine Specialty Center will provide you with a paper copy promptly.

Choose someone to act for you

  • If you have given someone medical power of attorney or if someone is your legal guardian, that person can exercise your rights and make choices about your health information.
  • We will make sure the person has this authority and can act for you before we take any action.

File a complaint if you feel your rights are violated

  • You can complain if you feel we have violated your rights by contacting us.
  • You can file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights by sending a letter to 200 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20201, calling 1-877-696-6775, or visiting
  • www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/complaints/
  • We will not retaliate against you for filing a complaint.

Your Choices

For certain health information, you can tell us your choices about what we share.

  • If you have a clear preference for how we share your information in the situations described below, talk to us. Tell us what you want us to do, and we will follow your instructions.
  • In these cases, you have both the right and choice to tell us to:
  • Share information with your family, close friends, or others involved in your care
  • Include your information in a hospital directory

If you are not able to tell us your preference, for example if you are unconscious, we may go ahead and share your information if we believe it is in your best interest. We may also share your information when needed to lessen a serious and imminent threat to health or safety.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Tennessee law generally requires patient consent to share health information with family members or friends, except as required or authorized by law.

In these cases we never share your information unless you give us written permission:

Spine Specialty Center does not sell or rent our patients’ names or addresses to any organization outside of the Center.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Tennessee law generally requires patient consent to contact patients for purposes of providing information regarding treatment alternatives, services, or goods.

Our Uses and Disclosures

How does Spine Specialty Center typically use or share your health information?

We typically use or share your health information in the following ways:

To treat you

We can use your health information and share it with other professionals who are treating you.

Example: A doctor treating you for an injury asks another doctor about your overall health condition.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Tennessee law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of health information for treatment purposes,

unless the disclosure is to a Spine Specialty Center related entity or consent is not possible due to a medical emergency.

To run our organization

We can use and share your health information to run our practice, improve your care, and contact you when necessary. All of our locations work closely together to improve health care operations across the Spine Specialty Center health system, and we may use health information for those activities. We may also share health information with another health care provider who has treated you, or to your insurance company. This may be done when the information is needed for health care operations of the health care provider or the insurance company, such as quality improvement activities, evaluations of health care professionals, and state and federal regulatoryreviews.

Example: We use health information about you to manage your treatment and services.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Tennessee law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of health information to other providers for health care operations purposes, unless the disclosure is to a Spine Specialty Center related entity.

Tennessee law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of health information to other providers for health care operations purposes.

To bill for your services

We can use and share your health information to bill and get payment from health plans or other entities.

Example: We give information about you to your health insurance plan so it will pay for your services.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

We are allowed or required to share your information in other ways—usually in ways that contribute to the public good, such as public health and research. We have to meet many conditions in the law before we can share your information for these purposes. For more information, you can go to this online link: www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/understanding/consumers/index.html

Help with public health and safety issues

We can share health information about you for certain situations such as:

  • Preventing disease
  • Helping with product recalls
  • Reporting adverse reactions to medications
  • Reporting suspected abuse, neglect, or domestic violence
  • Preventing or reducing a serious threat to anyone’s health or safety

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Wisconsin law generally requires patient consent to disclose information about your HIV test results, unless the disclosure is otherwise authorized or required by law.

Do research

We can use or share your information for health research.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Comply with the law

We will share information about you if state or federal laws require it, including with the Department of Healthand Human Services if it requests to see that we’re complying with federal privacy law.

Respond to organ and tissue donation requests

Spine Specialty Center can share health information about you with organ procurement organizations.

Work with a medical examiner or funeral director

We can share health information with a coroner, medical examiner, or funeral director when an individual dies.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Minnesota law generally requires the consent of a patient’s authorized family or legal representative for disclosures of health information to funeral directors.

Tennessee law generally requires consent of a patient’s authorized family or legal representative to release health information to funeral directors. However, HIV test results and certain other health information may be disclosed to a funeral director when necessary to permit the funeral director to carry out his/her duties.

Address workers’ compensation, law enforcement, and other government requests

Spine Specialty Center can use or share health information about you:

  • For workers’ compensation claims
  • For law enforcement purposes or with a law enforcement official
  • With health oversight agencies for activities authorized by law
  • For special government functions such as military, national security, and presidential protective services

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

We can share health information about you in response to a court or administrative order, or in response to a subpoena.

Minnesota law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of health information in these situations unless the disclosure is in response to a valid court order or warrant.

Spine Specialty Center’s  Responsibilities

We are required by law to maintain the privacy and security of your protected health information.

  • We will let you know promptly if a breach occurs that may have compromised the privacy or security of your information.
  • We must follow the duties and privacy practices described in this notice and give you a copy of it.
  • We will not use or share your information other than as described here unless you tell us we can in writing. If you tell us we can, you may change your mind at any time. Let us know in writing if you change your mind.

For more information see: www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/hipaa/understanding/consumers/noticepp.html

Changes to the Terms of this Notice

Spine Specialty Center can change the terms of this notice, and the changes will apply to all the information we have about you.

Who Is Covered by this Notice

Confidentiality of Substance Use Disorder Patient Records

Certain Spine Specialty Center facilities, units, and staff specialize in providing substance use disorder treatment (Programs).

The confidentiality of substance use disorder patient records maintained by these Programs is protected by special federal law and regulations, in addition to HIPAA. Generally, such a Program may not say to a person outside the Program that a patient attends the Program, or disclose any information identifying a patient as having or having had a substance use disorder unless:

(1) The patient consents in writing;

(2) The disclosure is allowed by a court order; or

(3) The disclosure is made to medical personnel in a medical emergency or to qualified personnel forresearch, audit, or program evaluation.

Violation of the federal law and regulations governing substance use disorder patient records by a Program is a crime. Suspected violations may be reported to appropriate authorities in accordance with federal regulations:

  • Federal law and regulations do not protect any information about a crime committed by a patient either at the
  • Program or against any person who works for the Program or about any threat to commit such a crime.
  • Federal laws and regulations do not protect any information about suspected child abuse or neglect from being
  • reported under state law to appropriate state or local authorities.
  • (See 42 U.S.C. 290dd-3 and 42 U.S.C. 290ee-3 for Federal laws and 42 CFR Part 2 for Federal regulations.)

Other Particularly Sensitive Conditions

Certain other types of health information may have additional protection under state law. For example, health information about mental health, HIV/AIDS and genetic testing results is treated differently than other types of health information under certain state laws. To the extent applicable, Spine Specialty Center would need to get your written permission before disclosing these categories of information to others in many circumstances.

Contact Information

If you want to file a complaint, express concerns, or further inquire about Spine Specialty Center’s use or disclosure of health information, please contact the Spine Specialty Center Privacy Office manager by calling 801 767 9500.

Effective Date

The Effective Date of this Notice is January 1, 2019.

Discrimination is Against the Law

Spine Specialty Center complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex. M Spine Specialty Center does not exclude people or treat them differently because of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.

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