NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES
Effective date: September 1, 2013
Latest Revision: February 16, 2015
THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES:
- HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED
- HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION
PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY
Caris Life Sciences® (Caris) has specific duties regarding your medical information. We understand that medical information about you and your health is personal. We are committed to protecting medical information about you.
This notice describes our legal duties, privacy practices and your patient rights as determined by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 as amended from time to time. We follow the terms of this Notice.
We are required by law to:
- Maintain the privacy of protected medical information
- Give you this notice upon request
- Follow the terms of our notice that is currently in effect
- Notify you following a breach of your unsecured medical information
HOW CARIS MAY USE AND DISCLOSE YOUR HEALTH INFORMATION
We use your Protected Health Information (PHI) for treatment, payment, or healthcare operations purposes and for other purposes permitted or required by law. Not every use or disclosure is listed in this Notice, but all of our uses or disclosures of your health information will fall into one of the categories listed below.
For Treatment: Caris may provide medical test information about you to your personal physician. We may disclose medical information about you to the appropriate doctors, nurses and health care personnel who you have authorized.
For Payment: Caris may use and disclose medical information about you so that the treatment and services you receive may be billed to and payment may be collected from you, an insurance company, or a third party. For example, we may send a claim to an insurance company that identifies you and the procedures you received from us. Your diagnosis may also be disclosed.
For Health Care Operations: Caris may use and disclose medical information about you for operational reasons. These uses and disclosures are necessary for us to make sure that all of our patients receive quality care. For example, we may use medical information to review the quality of our services and to evaluate the performance of our staff.
Business Associates: We may provide your PHI to other companies or individuals to assist us in providing specific services requiring the use and disclosure of PHI. These other entities, known as “business associates,” are required to maintain the privacy and security of PHI. Our business associates must only use your health information for the services they perform on our behalf. For example, we may provide information to companies that assist us with billing of our services. We may also use an outside collection agency to obtain payment when necessary. As of February 17, 2010, business associates have independent HIPAA compliance obligations.
Caris may also use or disclose your medical information without your authorization or providing you the opportunity to agree or object in the following situations:
As Required By Law: Caris will disclose medical information about you when required to do so by federal, state, or local law. Special situations that would fall under this category include, but are not limited to:
- Public health risks and/or in situations of abuse and neglect
- Court orders and legal proceedings, including lawsuits and disputes in which you are involved
- Law enforcement duties
- Food and Drug Administration requirements
To Avert a Serious Threat to Health or Safety: We may use and disclose medical information about you when necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of the public or another person. Any disclosure, however, would only be to someone able to help prevent the threat.
Organ and Tissue Donation: If you are an organ donor, we may release medical information to organizations that handle organ procurement or organ eye or tissue transplantation or to an organ donation bank, as necessary to facilitate organ or tissue donation and transplantation.
Government Functions: Caris may disclose your health information to protect public officials as directed by law or as required by military command authorities.
Workers’ Compensation: Caris may release medical information about you for workers’ compensation or similar programs.
Decedents: Caris may release medical information to a coroner, medical examiner, or funeral director as necessary to carry out their duties.
Health Oversight Activities: Caris may disclose medical information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law. These oversight activities may include audits, investigations, inspections, licensure and disciplinary actions.
OTHER USES OF MEDICAL INFORMATION
Other uses and disclosures of medical information not covered by this notice or the laws that apply to us will be made only with your written permission. If you provide us permission to use or disclose medical information about you, you may revoke that permission, in writing, at any time. If you revoke your permission, we will no longer use or disclose medical information about you for the reasons covered by your written authorization. You understand that we are unable to take back any disclosures we have already made with your permission, and that we are required to retain our records of the care that we provided to you.
Marketing: We may provide information to you regarding treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits that may be of interest to you, but we must abide by strict limitations on third-party funding for such communications.
Sale of PHI: We are prohibited from selling your PHI without your prior authorization.
YOUR RIGHTS REGARDING MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU
You have the following rights regarding medical information we maintain about you:
Right to Request Restrictions: You have the right to request a restriction or limitation on the medical information we use or disclose about you for treatment, payment, or health operations. Except where you request a restriction on disclosure to your health plan and you have paid for the related services in full (and the disclosure is not required by law), we are not required to agree to your request. We are required to notify you if we fail to approve a restriction request.
Right to Request Confidential Communications: You have the right to request that we communicate with you about medical matters in a certain way or at a certain location.
Right to Receive Test Information: You have the right to receive a copy of certain PHI that we have created, including test result reports and billing records. You may request a paper copy of your PHI or an electronic copy of your PHI that we maintain electronically and you may also request that we transmit the information to you or to another individual or third party. We may charge you a reasonable, cost-based fee for providing these copies.
Right to Amend: If you feel that medical information we have about you is incorrect or incomplete, you may ask us to amend the information.
Right to Accounting of Disclosures: You have the right to request a list of the disclosures we have made of medical information about you in the past six years from the date of your written request. Under the law, this does not include disclosures made for purposes of treatment, payment, or healthcare operations except for certain disclosures made through an electronic health record.
Right to a Paper Copy of This Notice: We will provide a paper copy of this notice upon request, even if you have agreed to receive a copy of this Notice electronically.
Right to Receive Notice in the Event of a Breach: In the event of a breach of your PHI that has not been secured in accordance with federal standards (such as encrypted), you have the right to be notified of the breach and to be provided, to the extent available, with a description of the breach, a description of the types of information involved in the breach, the steps you should take to protect yourself from potential harm, a brief description of what we are doing to investigate the breach, mitigate harm, and prevent further breaches, as well as contact information for questions or concerns regarding the breach.
WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO CHANGE THIS NOTICE
We reserve the right to make the revised or changed notice effective for medical information we already have about you as well as any information we receive in the future. We will post a copy of the current Notice on our website and will update the effective date accordingly.
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with Caris or with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, Office for Civil Rights. You will not be penalized for filing a complaint.
If you have any questions or complaints, please contact:
Corporate Compliance Officer
6655 North MacArthur Blvd
Irving, TX 75039
(214) 277-8700 main
(866) 771-8946 toll free