Patient Privacy

THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION. PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.

This Notice of Privacy Practices (“Notice”) describes the type of information the Gastroenterology Associates of North Mississippi, PA and the Endoscopy Center of North Mississippi gather about you, with whom that information may be shared, and the safeguards we have in place to protect it. The Gastroenterology Associates or North Mississippi, PA and the Endoscopy Center of Northern Mississippi have designated themselves as are an organized healthcare arrangement under HIPAA. The term “we” as used throughout this Notice refers to Gastroenterology Associates or North Mississippi, PA and the Endoscopy Center of Northern Mississippi.

We are required by HIPAA to maintain the privacy of Protected Health Information (PHI), to provide individuals with notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to PHI, and to notify affected individuals following a breach of unsecured PHI. PHI is information that may identify you and that relates to your past, present, or future physical or mental health or condition; the provision of health care products and services to you; or the payment for such services.

We are required to follow the terms of this Notice as well as any changes to it that may be in effect. We reserve the right to change our practices, and any updated Notice will be posted on our website. Upon request, we will provide additional copies of our current Notice to you.

If you have any questions regarding this Notice, please contact our Privacy Officer, whose contact information is provided at the end of this Notice.

Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information

We will use and disclose your PHI for treatment, payment, and health care operations. Following are examples of the types of uses and disclosures of your PHI that may occur. These examples are not meant to be exhaustive, but to describe the types of uses and disclosures that maybe made by our office.

Treatment: We will use and disclose your PHI to provide, coordinate or manage your healthcare and any related services. This includes the coordination or management of your health care with a third party. For example, we would disclose your protected health information, as necessary, to a home health agency that provides care to you. We will also disclose protected health information to other physicians who may be treating you. For example, your PHI may be provided to a physician to whom you have been referred to ensure that the physician has the necessary information to diagnose or treat you.

In addition, we may disclose your PHI from time to time to another physician or health care provider (e.g., a specialist or laboratory)who, at the request of your physician, becomes involved in your care by providing assistance with your health care diagnosis or treatment to your physician.

Payment: Your PHI will be used, as needed, to obtain payment for your health care services. This may include certain activities that your health insurance plan may undertake before it approves or pays for the health care services we recommend for you, such as: making a determination of eligibility or coverage for insurance benefits, reviewing services provided to you for protected health necessity, and undertaking utilization review activities. For example, obtaining approval for a hospital stay may require that your relevant protected health information be disclosed to the health plan to obtain approval for the hospital admission.

Health Care Operations: We may use or disclose, as needed, your PHI in order to conduct certain business and operational activities. These activities include, but are not limited to, quality assessment activities, employee review activities, training of students, licensing, and conducting or arranging for other business activities. For example, we may use or disclose your protected health information, as necessary, to contact you by telephone or mail to remind you of your appointment.

Business Associates: We will share your protected health information with third party "business associates" that perform various activities (e.g., billing, transcription services) for the practice. Whenever an arrangement between our office and a business associate involves the use or disclosure of your PHI, we will have a written contract that contains terms that will protect the privacy of your PHI.

Treatment Alternatives: We may use or disclose your PHI, as necessary, to provide you with information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.

Marketing: We may also use and disclose your PHI for r marketing activities. For example, your name and address may be used to send you a newsletter about our practice and the services we offer. We may also send you information about products or services that we believe may be beneficial to you. You may contact us to request that these materials not be sent to you. We will obtain your authorization for marketing when required by HIPAA.

Uses and Disclosures Based On Your Written Authorization: Other uses and disclosures of your PHI will be made only with your authorization, unless otherwise permitted or required by law as described below. You may give us written authorization to use your PHI or to disclose it to anyone for any purpose. If you give us an authorization, you may revoke it in writing at any time. Your revocation will not affect any use or disclosures permitted by your authorization while it was in effect. Without your written authorization, we will not disclose your health care information except as described in this notice.

Others Involved in Your Health Care: Unless you object, we may disclose to a member of your family, a relative, a close friend or any other person you identify, your PHI that directly relates to that person's involvement in your health care. If you are unable to agree or object to such a disclosure, we may disclose such information as necessary if we determine that it is in your best interest based on our professional judgment. We may use or disclose PHI to notify or assist in notifying a family member, personal representative or any other person that is responsible for your care of your location, general condition or death.

Research; Death; Organ Donation: We may use or disclose your PHI for research purposes in limited circumstances. We may disclose the PHI of a deceased person to a coroner, protected health examiner, funeral director or organ procurement organization for certain purposes.

Public Health and Safety: We may disclose your PHI to the extent necessary to avert a serious and imminent threat to your health or safety, or the health or safety of others. We may disclose your PHI to a government agency authorized to oversee the health care system or government programs or its contractors, and to public health authorities for public health purposes.

Health Oversight: We may disclose PHI to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law, such as audits, investigations and inspections. Oversight agencies seeking this information include government agencies that oversee the health care system, government benefit programs, other government regulatory programs and civil rights laws.

Abuse or Neglect: We may disclose your PHI to a public health authority that is authorized by law to receive reports of child abuse or neglect. In addition, we may disclose your PHI if we believe that you have been a victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence to the governmental entity or agency authorized to receive such information. In this case, the disclosure will be made consistent with the requirements of applicable federal and state laws.

Food and Drug Administration: We may disclose your PHI to a person or company required by the Food and Drug Administration to report adverse events, product defects or problems, biologic product deviations; to track products; to enable product recalls; to make repairs or replacements; or to conduct post marketing surveillance, as required.

Criminal Activity: Consistent with applicable federal and state laws, we may disclose PHI, if we believe that the use or disclosure is necessary to prevent or lessen a serious and imminent threat to the health or safety of a person or the public. We may also disclose PHI if it is necessary for law enforcement authorities to identify or apprehend an individual.

Required by Law: We may use or disclose your protected health information when we are required to do so by law. For example, we must disclose your protected health information to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services upon request for purposes of determining whether we are in compliance with federal privacy laws. We may disclose your protected health information when authorized by workers' compensation or similar laws.

Process and Proceedings: We may disclose your protected health information in response to a court or administrative order, subpoena, discovery request or other lawful process, under certain circumstances. Under limited circumstances, such as a court order, warrant or grand jury subpoena, we may disclose your PHI to law enforcement officials.

Law Enforcement: We may disclose limited information to a law enforcement official concerning the PHI of a suspect, fugitive, material witness, crime victim or missing person. We may disclose the PHI of an inmate or other person in lawful custody to a law enforcement official or correctional institution under certain circumstances. We may disclose PHI information where necessary to assist law enforcement officials to capture an individual who has admitted to participation in a crime or has escaped from lawful custody.

Patient Rights

Access: You have the right to look at or get copies of your PHI, with limited exceptions. You must make a request in writing to the contact person listed herein to obtain access to your PHI. You may also request access by sending us a letter to the address at the end of this notice. If you request copies, we will charge you the amount allowed under HIPAA for copies and postage if you want the copies mailed to you. If you prefer, we will prepare a summary or an explanation of your PHI for a fee. Contact us using the information listed at the end of this notice for a full explanation of our fee structure.

Accounting of Disclosures: You have the right to receive a list of instances in which we or our business associates disclosed your PHI for purposes other than treatment, payment, health care operations and certain other activities for the last six years. We will provide you with the date on which we made the disclosure, the name of the person or entity to whom we disclosed your PHI, a description of the PHI we disclosed, the reason for the disclosure, and certain other information. If you request this list more than once in a12-month period, we may charge you a reasonable, cost-based fee for responding to these additional requests. Contact us using the information listed at the end of this notice for a full explanation of our fee structure.

Restriction Requests: You have the right to request that we place additional restrictions on our use or disclosure of your PHI. We are not required to agree to these additional restrictions, but if we do, we will abide by our agreement (except in an emergency). Any agreement we may make to a request for additional restrictions must be in writing signed by a person authorized to make such an agreement on our behalf. We will not be bound unless our agreement is so memorialized in writing.

Confidential Communication: You have the right to request that we communicate with you in confidence about your PHI by alternative means or to an alternative location. You must make your request in writing. We must accommodate your request if it is reasonable, specifies the alternative means or location, and continues to permit us to bill and collect payment from you.

Amendment: You have the right to request that we amend your PHI. Your request must be in writing, and it must explain why the information should be amended. We may deny your request if we did not create the information you want amended or for certain other reasons. If we deny your request, we will provide you a written explanation. You may respond with a statement of disagreement to be appended to the information you wanted amended. If we accept your request to amend the information, we will make reasonable efforts to inform others, including people or entities you name, of the amendment and to include the changes in any future disclosures of that information.

Paper Notice: If you receive this notice on our website or by electronic mail (e-mail), you are entitled to receive this notice in paper form. Please contact us using the information listed at the end of this notice to obtain this notice in paper form.

Questions and Complaints

If you want more information about our privacy practices or have questions or concerns, please contact us using the information below. If you believe that we may have violated your privacy rights, or you disagree with a decision we made about access to your PHI or in response to a request you made, you may complain to us using the contact information below. You also may submit a written complaint to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. We will provide you with the address to file your complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services upon request.

We support your right to protect the privacy of your PHI We will not retaliate in anyway if you choose to file a complaint with us or with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Name of Contact Person: Roger Franck
Telephone: (662) 234-9888
Address: 1208 Office Park Drive
Oxford, MS 38655