Privacy Policy

FALL RIVER JEWISH HOME, INC. • NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES

REVISED DATE: September, 2013

This notice describes how protected health information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully.

I. GENERAL DESCRIPTION AND PURPOSE OF THIS NOTICE

This notice describes the Fall River Jewish Home, Inc. (“FRJH”) privacy practices including that of:

These individuals or entities may share your Protected Health Information (PHI) with each other for purposes of treatment, payment, or health care operations, as further described in this notice.

II. PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION

Your medical record contains your symptoms, examination and test results, diagnoses, treatment, a plan for future care or treatment, and billing-related information. This Notice applies to all identifiable protected health information (“Protected Health Information”) in the medical records of your care generated by the Fall River Jewish Home, whether made by Fall River Jewish Home personnel, agents of the Fall River Jewish Home, or your personal doctor. Your personal doctor may have different policies or notices regarding the doctor’s use and disclosure of your Protected Health Information created in the doctor’s office or clinic

III. OUR RESPONSIBILITIES

We are required by law to maintain the privacy of your Protected Health Information and provide you with this Notice of our legal duties and a description of our privacy practices with respect to your Protected Health Information. We will only use and/or disclose your Protected Health Information in accordance with the terms of this Notice while it is in effect.

IV. USES AND DISCLOSURES WITHOUT YOUR WRITTEN CONSENT OR AUTHORIZATION

The following categories describe examples of the way we may use and disclose your Protected Health Information without your authorization or written consent:

A. Treatment, Payment and Health Care Operations

For Treatment. We may use your PHI to provide you with health care treatment and services. We may disclose your PHI to doctors, nurses, nursing assistants, medication aides, technicians, medical, nursing and C.N.A. students, rehabilitation therapy specialists, or other personnel who are involved in your health care. For example your physician may order physical therapy services to improve your strength and walking abilities. Our nursing staff will need to talk with the physical therapist so that we can coordinate services and develop a plan of care. We may also disclose your PHI to people outside of our facility who may be involved in your medical care after you leave our care such as family members, social service agencies, or home health agencies.

For Payment: We may use and disclose Protected Health Information about your treatment and services to bill and collect payment from you, your insurance company, or a third party payer. For example, we may need to give your insurance company information about your treatment so they will pay us or reimburse you for the treatment provided. We may tell your health plan about treatments you are going to receive to determine whether your plan will cover the services provided. We may also share your medical information with billing and collection departments or agencies, insurance companies and health plans in order to collect payments.

For Health Care Operations: We may use your Protected Health Information for our health care operations, which include internal administration and planning and various activities that improve the quality and cost effectiveness of the care and customer service that we deliver to you. For example, we may use it to evaluate the quality and competence of our physicians, nurses and other health care workers, and we may provide your information to the Ombudsman in order to resolve any complaints you may have and ensure that you have a comfortable visit with us. In addition, we may disclose your Protected Health Information for certain types of health care operations, including any peer review or utilization review activities we undertake. For example, we may combine Protected Health Information we have with that of other rehabilitation and skilled nursing facilities to see where we can make improvements to our services.

For Public Health, Abuse or Neglect, and Health Oversight – for example, to alert a person who may have been exposed to a disease or may be at risk for contracting or spreading a disease.

Other Authorizations Required by Law – including: legal proceedings and law enforcement; Workers’ Compensation; Protected Health Information related to Inmates; Military, National Security and Intelligence Activities; for the Protection of the President; certain approved research purposes; organ donation; for use by coroners, medical examiners and funeral directors; or any other reason such a disclosure would be required by law.

B. Business Associates

There are some services provided in our organization through contracts with business associates. Examples include pharmacy, laboratory, radiology, therapy, and counseling services. When these services are contracted, we may disclose your Protected Health Information to our business associates so that they can perform the job we have asked them to perform or to bill you or your third-party payer for services rendered. To protect your Protected Health Information, however, we contractually require the business associate to appropriately safeguard your information.

C. Directory

Unless you request otherwise, we may include certain limited information about you in the facility directory while you are here. The information may include your name, location in the facility, your condition in general terms, and your religious affiliation. This information may be provided to members of the clergy and, except for religious affiliation, to other people who ask for you by name. If you would like to opt out of being in the facility directory or restrict some or all of the information to be included in the directory, please request such opt out or restriction during the admission process.

D. Individuals Involved In Your Care or Payment for Your Care

We may release to a family member or other relative, a close personal friend, or any person identified by you Protected Health Information that is directly relevant to that person’s involvement in your medical care or payment for your medical care, when you are present for, or otherwise available prior to, the disclosure, and do not object to such disclosure after being given the opportunity to do so. We may also disclose your Protected Health Information to such persons with your verbal agreement or written consent. In addition, we may disclose Protected Health Information about you to an entity assisting in a disaster relief effort so that your family can be notified about your condition, status and location. You can limit the people to whom we can disclose Protected Health Information about you by requesting such limitation during the admission process.

E. Research

We may disclose Protected Health Information to researchers without your consent or authorization when an institutional review board that has reviewed the research proposal and established protocols to ensure the privacy of your Protected Health Information has approved the research and granted a waiver of the authorization. In addition, certain elements of your Protected Health Information may be reviewed by our clinicians, employees or workforce to determine your potential eligibility for one or more clinical research trials, and we may contact you via telephone to determine your willingness to participate.

F. Future Communications

We may communicate to you via newsletters, mail outs or other means regarding treatment options, health related information, disease-management programs, wellness programs, or other community based initiatives or activities in which Fall River Jewish Home is participating.

G. Fundraising Communications

We may use Protected Health Information to contact you to request a tax-deductible contribution to support important activities of Fall River Jewish Home. We may disclose Protected Health Information to a foundation, or a business associate on behalf of Fall River Jewish Home, related to our organization so that the foundation or business associate may contact you in raising money for Fall River Jewish Home. We may use, or disclose to a business associate or to an institutionally related foundation, the following Protected Health Information for the purpose of raising funds for Fall River Jewish Home’s own benefit, without an authorization which meets the requirements of Sec. 164.508: (i) demographic information relating to an individual, including name, address, other contact information, age, gender, and date of birth; (ii) dates of health care provided to an individual; (iii) department of service information; (iv) treating physician; (v) outcome information; and (vi) health insurance status. If you wish to make a tax-deductible contribution now or do not want to receive any fundraising requests in the future, you may contact the Administrator at (508) 679-6172. If you chose to not receive any further fundraising requests and later change your mind, you can contact us via the telephone at the numbers listed and request to receive future fundraising information. If you choose to opt out of fundraising participation at this time, you may change your mind later by contacting the Administrator at

(508)679-6172 to opt back into fundraising participation.

H. Public Health Activities

We may disclose your Protected Health Information for the following public health activities: (1) to report health information to public health authorities for the purpose of preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability; (2) to report child abuse and neglect, elder abuse, and disabled persons abuse to public health authorities or other government authorities authorized by law to receive such reports; (3) to report information about products and services under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; (4) if we know or have reason to believe that you are infected with a venereal disease, to alert your fiancée (if your are engaged) or your spouse (if you are married), or your parent or guardian (if you are a minor, unless as a minor you have sought treatment with us for such venereal disease); (5) to report information to your insurer and/or other parties as required under state law addressing work-related illnesses and injuries; (6) to report information related to the birth and subsequent health of an infant to state government agencies as required by law; (7) to file a death certificate and report fetal deaths; and (8) to correctional institutions for inmates.

I. Health Oversight Activities

We may disclose your Protected Health Information to a health oversight agency that oversees the health care system or government benefit programs (such as Medicare or Medicaid).

J. Law Enforcement/Legal Proceedings

We may disclose Protected Health Information for law enforcement purposes as required by law or in response to a valid subpoena, a court order, or other lawful process.

K. State-Specific Requirements

Many states have requirements for reporting including population-based activities relating to improving health or reducing health care costs. Some states have separate privacy laws that may provide additional legal requirements. If the state privacy laws are more stringent than federal privacy laws, the state law preempts the federal law.

L. Decedents

We may disclose your Protected Health Information to a coroner or medical examiner as authorized by law.

M. Organ And Tissue Procurement

If you are an organ donor, we may disclose your Protected Health Information to organizations that facilitate organ, eye or tissue procurement, banking or transplantation.

N. Health Or Safety

We may disclose Protected Health Information to prevent or lessen a serious danger to you or to others.

O. Specialized Government Functions

We may use and disclose your Protected Health Information to units of the government with special functions, such as the U.S. military or the U.S. Department of State under certain circumstances.

P. Ordered Examinations

We may disclose Protected Health Information when required to report findings from an examination ordered by a court or detention facility.

Q. As Required By Law

We may use and disclose your Protected Health Information when required to do so by any other law not already referred to in the preceding categories.

R. Uses and Disclosures That Require Authorization

Most uses and disclosures of psychotherapy notes (where appropriate), uses and disclosures of Protected Health Information for marketing purposes and disclosures that constitute a sale of Protected Health Information require authorization. Other uses and disclosures not described in this Notice of Privacy Practices will be made only with authorization from the individual.

V. YOUR RIGHTS WITH RESPECT TO YOUR PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION

Although your health record is the physical property of the health care practitioner or facility that compiled it, you have the following rights.

a. Inspect and Copy

You have the right to inspect and obtain a copy of your medical record file containing Protected Health Information. If the record is in electronic format you have the right to receive an electronic copy of your  medical record in a form (machine readable) that meets your needs. If you chose to have the electronic  Protected Health Information emailed to you, we will send to you via an encrypted email. If you chose to receive the email in an unencrypted format, there is a risk that an unintended person could possibly intercept and open the email with your Protected Health information attached. Usually, these requests include medical and billing records, but not psychotherapy notes. We may deny your request to inspect and copy a portion of your records in certain limited circumstances. If you are denied access to Protected Health Information, you may request that the denial be reviewed. Another licensed health care professional chosen by the Fall River Jewish Home will review your request and the denial. The person conducting the review will not be the same person who denied your request. We will comply with the outcome of the review. If you request copies, we will charge you a reasonable cost-based fee for such copies. You will also be charged postage costs if you request the copies be mailed to you.

b. Amend

If you feel that Protected Health Information we have about you is incorrect or incomplete, you may ask us to amend the information. You have the right to request an amendment for as long as the information is kept by or for the hospital. We may deny your request for an amendment if we believe the information as currently stated is accurate and complete or other special circumstances apply, and if this occurs, you will be notified of the reason for the denial.

c. An Accounting of Disclosures

You have the right to request an accounting of disclosures of your Protected Health Information. This is a list of certain disclosures we make of your Protected Health Information for purposes other than treatment, payment or health care operations where an authorization was not required. If you request an accounting more than once in a twelve (12) month period, we will charge you a reasonable cost-based fee for the accounting.

d. A Paper Copy of This Notice

You have the right to a paper copy of this Notice. You may ask us to give you a copy of this Notice at any time. Even if you have agreed to receive this Notice electronically, you are still entitled to a paper copy of this Notice. The Fall River Jewish Home has a website you may print or view a copy of the Notice by clicking on the Notice of Privacy Practices link at www.fallriverjewishhome.org.

e. Complaints

If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with the facility by telephone by calling Christine M. Vitale, Administrator at 508-679-6172. In addition, you may file a complaint in writing to Fall River Jewish Home, Privacy Officer,538 Robeson Street, Fall River, MA 02720 or via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You may also file a complaint with the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) at: 200 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20201, (202) 619-0227 or toll-free 1-877-666-6775. You will not be penalized for filing a complaint.

f. Right to Request Additional Restrictions

You have the right to request restrictions on the use and disclosure of your Protected Health Information. However, we are not required to agree to a requested restriction and will only agree to a requested restriction if there is a substantial need or basis for the request and will not do so as a matter or course. If you wish to request such a restriction, please contact our Privacy Office identified below.

g. Right to Receive Confidential Communications

You may request, and we will accommodate, any reasonable written request to receive your Protected Health Information by alternative means of communication or at alternative locations.

h. Right to be Notified in the Event of a Breach of Unsecured Protected Health Information

You will be notified in the event there is a breach of your unsecured Protected Health Information.

i. Right to Restrict Disclosures of Protected Health Information

You have the right to restrict disclosures to health plans if services have been paid for out of pocket in full. The request to restrict the disclosure shall be made in writing, and the request should identify: (i) the information to be restricted, (ii) the type of restriction being requested (i.e. on the use of information, the disclosure of information, or both), and (iii) to whom the limits should apply.

VI. OTHER USES OF PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION

Other uses and disclosures of Protected Health Information not covered by this Notice or the laws that apply to us will be made only with your permission in the form of a written authorization. If you provide us permission to use or disclose Protected Health 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 Protected Health Information about you for the reasons covered by your written authorization. However, we will be unable to take back any disclosures we have previously made based upon your written authorization.

VII. CHANGES TO THIS NOTICE

We reserve the right to change this Notice and the revised or changed Notice will be effective for information we already have about you as well as any information we receive in the future. The current Notice will be posted in the facility and include the effective date. In addition, each time you register at or are admitted for treatment or health care services as an inpatient or outpatient, we will offer you a copy of the current Notice in effect.

VIII. QUESTIONS

If you have questions concerning Fall River Jewish Home’s Privacy Practices, please call 508-679-6172 and ask for the Privacy Officer. If you have questions concerning patient Medical Records, please call 508-679-6172 and ask for the Medical Records Department.