Comparison and Contrasting of Health Laws: 42 CFR Part 2 and HIPAA( the Health Insurance Portability and Privacy Act of 1996).
This paper will consist of 5 pages of analysis comparing and contrasting two health laws: 42 CFR Part 2 and HIPAA( the Health Insurance Portability and Privacy Act of 1996). This comparison between both laws should be seen in each paragraph. Provide numerous references in APA citation format at the end of the paper which is not included in the word count for the pages.
The National Governors Association (NGA), through funding resources from the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA), would host a two-day policy academy for three state pilot project sites (Pickles, 2017). These states, Illinois, Iowa, and Kansas were to discuss the exchange of information between justice and health institutions. The main objective is to debunk the misperceptions existing between the health service providers and justice entities and also begin the strategic planning process for each one’s site. In this discussion, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996 and Title 42: Public Health, Part 2- Confidentiality of Substance Abuse Patient Records (42 CFR Part 2) were cited as primary challenges in understanding information sharing (Pickles, 2017). Nonetheless, information sharing is among the pressing issues that are highly confused when it comes to federal regulations. Executive buy-in s and frontline acceptance are other aspects that experience considerable confusion in relation to the rule.
Therefore, this research paper seeks to address these two regulations, HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2, specifically comparing and contrasting the two to understand their particular functions. Any myths associated with the federal rules will be dispelled with the right information.
The Federal Laws: HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2
The applicability of these two federal regulations presents their first difference. The HIPAA are guidelines given on health plans, healthcare clearinghouses, and the respective providers whose role is electronic information transmission for billing and other specific transactions (Hu, Sparenborg & Tai, 2011). HIPAA was the first federal law to deal with privacy and security standards in a broadened dimension. With the advancement of HIT, HIPAA has been amended over the years to accommodate the changes. This privacy rule offers federal protections for Individually Identifiable Health Information (IIHI) that is in the hands of covered entities and also gives patients the right to scrutinize individual health records (Hu, Sparenborg & Tai, 2011). The patients can also request for corrections if they believe that the records are wrong or misleading.
On the other hand, 42 CFR Part 2 has its primary objective in addressing the confidentiality of substance abuse disorder patient records. The federal confidentiality law prevents unauthorized disclosure of related patient information except in limited circumstances (Legal Action Center, 2018). The law was enforced in the 1970s to encourage persons with substance abuse disorders to join and remain in treatment programs. Discrimination and negative consequences from both stigma and legal penalties with substance abuse and addiction is the reason why many fear to enter rehabilitation centers (American Society of Addiction Medicine, 2020). The respective public health officials agreed that the affected individuals are more likely to look for treatment and stay all through the programs as long as their records are not unnecessarily disclosed to others without their consent or knowledge.
Framework of Principles
These two federal regulations are based on a similar frame of principles. These principles are specifically privacy, confidentiality, and security. Privacy entails the state of being alone or having the right of an individual keeping their matters and relationships personal or secret. The privacy practices required by the laws include the patient understanding the statement of patient’s rights with each (Legal Information Institute, 2020). Furthermore, the statement should have a description of each purpose in which the covered entity will be permitted or needed to utilize or disclose any protected health information without written authorization from the patient.
The second principle, confidentiality, is the practice of ensuring that information can only be accessed by those authorized to access it. According to the 42 CFR Part 2, the confidentiality of addiction treatment records for any individual who has pursued treatment or diagnosed with addiction in a federally assisted program (Legal Action Center, 2018). HIPAA’s upholding confidentiality entails any individual with the responsibility of receiving health information, ensuring that they keep it private (Scholl et al., 2008). The third principle of security entails the procedures initiated to guarantee freedom of secrecy of any action. HIPAA requires all healthcare professionals to protect electronically stored patient information through proper administrative, physical, and technical safeguards (Scholl et al., 2008). In regards to the 42 CFR Part 2, written records that are subject to these rules need to be maintained in a secure place, whether a locked file cabinet, safe among similar devices. Additionally, ether should be established procedures to regulate and control the access of the respective written records.
According to HIPAA, the client is considered the subject of the protected health information, either existing or future. The data for this client is both the clinical and financial information received from any medium (Office for Civil Rights, 2013). Clients are also the persons or entities subject to HIPAA regulations as either Business Associates or Continuing Education. On the other hand, the client in 42 CFR Part 2, is any person who has made an application, has been diagnosed, or is getting treated for substance use disorder at a federally assisted program/ these individuals include those who have been arrested, have criminal charges or have been found eligible to undertake a 42 CFR Part 2 program.
In terms of identifying information related to clients, the data utilized is similar to both federal laws. The data taken includes the name, address, social security number, fingerprints, fingerprints, contact information, medical records number, health plan number, device serial numbers, among others (Huggins, 2019). The data for identification should not include a number that is used to identify a patient with a particular program as it should be for internal use only.
Information Sharing Myths
The apprehension concerning information sharing concerning the two federal laws has been highly exaggerated and misguided. These two regulations do not prohibit the sharing of information between justice and health entities. Their intention is the protection of privacy for free citizens (Matz, 2014). The two federal regulations do not prevent probation/parole agents from engaging in information-sharing projects with health institutions. However, the laws require the agencies to be sensible and deliberate those they allow to access highly sensitive Protected Health Information (PHI) (HIPAA Journal, 2019). The sharing of information could be limited technically due to the different data elements, user restrictions, and various data definitions(Matz, 2014). Nonetheless, Global tools such as the National Information Exchange Model can help within short durations and with reduced expenses.
Other Issues Presenting Differences
In terms of child abuse or neglect, HIPAA allows the formulation of a report that is to be given to the proper authorities of abuse. On the other hand, 42 CFR Part 2 indicates that a specific exception is allowed in the reporting of the child abuse case (Pickles, 2017). However, the disclosure restrictions and use of information stipulated in the first alcohol and drug abuse records maintained by the program continue to apply. The disclosure guidelines apply even to criminal and civil proceedings that may arise from the court.
For court orders and subpoenas, both of these statements are required and should be issued with a judge following the stipulated procedures and criteria in the 42 CFR Part 2 (Pickles, 2017). However, the HIPAA can disclose information while responding to a court order only or a subpoena only or a discovery request that has been made through a law procedure alone. These guidelines also apply to law enforcement. After providing the two statements as required by the 42 CFR Part 2, disclosure can be done for a crime that has happened within program premises by the clients or has been done against the program’s workers, or there is an actual threat for an offense about to happen. In HIPAA, disclosure to law enforcement agencies and jailing with no consent can occur if it has been done as per the law, there is a subpoena or warrant, there is a need to locate missing individuals or one is a crime victim (Pickles, 2017).
HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2 are federal laws whose primary goal is to protect patient information from unauthorized access. Nonetheless, they each have their distinct roles and clients to protect. It is essential that both laws are fully understood and their jurisdictions to avoid confusion or creation of misconceptions. Understanding the similarities and differences will aid in avoiding confusion.
American Society of Addiction Medicine. (2020). Confidentiality (42 CFR Part 2). Retrieved from https://www.asam.org/advocacy/advocacy-principles/standardize-it/confidentiality-(42-CFR-part-2)-new
HIPAA Journal. (2019, February 21). What has protected health information? Retrieved from https://www.hipaajournal.com/what-is-protected-health-information/
Hu, L & Sparenborg, S & Tai, B. (2011). Privacy protection for patients with substance use problems. Substance abuse and rehabilitation. 2. 227-33. 10.2147/SAR.S27237.
Huggins, R. (2019, December 13). How to Deidentify (or not) client info under HIPAA. Retrieved from https://personcenteredtech.com/2018/05/18/deidentify-or-not-client-info-under-hipaa/
Legal Action Center. (2018, July 2). The fundamentals of 42 CFR Part 2: What is it? Why is it important? Retrieved from https://lac.org/addiction-confidentiality-42-cfr-part-2-important/
Legal Information Institute. (2020). 42 CFR § 403.812 – HIPAA privacy, security, administrative data standards, and national identifiers. Retrieved from https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/42/403.812
Matz, A. K. (2014). A Note on HIPAA and 42 CFR Part 2: Dispelling the Myths about Justice-Health Information Sharing. American Probation and Parole Assoc, & United States of America.
Office for Civil Rights. (2013, July 26). Summary of the HIPAA Privacy Rule. Retrieved from https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/privacy/laws-regulations/index.html
Pickles, P.D. (2017). 42 CFR PART 2 V HIPAA: Compare and Contrast. HCCA Clinical Practice Compliance Conference.
Scholl, M., Stine, K., Hash, J., Bowen, P., Johnson, A., Smith, C., & Steinberg, D. (2008). Introductory Resource Guide for Implementing the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule [revision 1]. Introductory Resource Guide for Implementing the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Security Rule [revision 1]/AHIMA, American Health Information Management Association.