HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices
This notice describes how health information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully.
The Dental Practice Covered By This Notice
This Notice describes the privacy practices of Austin Children’s Dentistry. “We” and “our” means the Dental Practice. “You” and “your” means our patient.
How to Contact Our Privacy Official
If you have any questions or would like further information about this Notice, you can either write to or call the Privacy Official for our Dental Practice:
Austin Children’s Dentistry
Privacy Official: Debbie Mazuca
Mailing Address: 13616 N. Hwy 183
Austin, TX 78750
Information Covered By This Notice
This Notice applies to health information about you that we create or receive and that identifies you. This Notice tells you about the ways we may use and disclose your health information. It also describes your rights and certain obligations we have with respect to your health information. We are required by law to:
- maintain the privacy of your health information;
- give you this Notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to that information;
- abide by the terms of our Notice that is currently in effect.
Our Use and Disclose of Your Health Information Without Your Written Authorization
Common Reasons for Our Use and Disclosure of Patient Health Information Treatment. We will use your health information to provide you with dental treatment or services, such as cleaning or examining your teeth or performing dental procedures. We may disclose health information about you to dental specialists, physicians, or other health care professionals involved in your care.
Payment: We may use and disclose your health information to obtain payment from health plans and insurers for the care that we provide to you.
Health Care Operations: We may use and disclose health information about you in connection with health care operations necessary to run our practice, including review of our treatment and services, training, evaluating the performance of our staff and health care professionals, quality assurance, financial or billing audits, legal matters, and business planning and development.
Appointment Reminders: We may use or disclose your health information when contacting you to remind you of a dental appointment. We may contact you by using a postcard, letter, voicemail, or email.
Treatment Alternatives and Health-Related Benefits and Services: We may use and disclose your health information to tell you about treatment options or alternatives or health-related benefits and services that may be of interest to you.
Disclosure to Family Members and Friends: We may disclose your health information to a family member or friend who is involved with your care or payment for your care if you do not object or, if you are not present, we believe it is in your best interest to do so.
Less Common Reasons for Use and Disclosure of Patient Health Information
The following uses and disclosures occur infrequently and may never apply to you.
Disclosures Required by Law: We may use or disclose patient health information to the extent we are required by law to do so. For example, we are required to disclose patient health information to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services so that it can investigate complaints or determine our compliance with HIPAA.
Public Health Activities: We may disclose patient health information for public health activities and purposes, which include: preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability; reporting births or deaths; reporting child abuse or neglect; reporting adverse reactions to medications or foods; reporting product defects; enabling product recalls; and notifying a person who may have been exposed to a disease or may be at risk for contracting or spreading a disease or condition.
Victims of Abuse, Neglect or Domestic Violence: We may disclose health information to the appropriate government authority about a patient whom we believe is a victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence.
Health Oversight Activities: We may disclose patient health information to a health oversight agency for activities necessary for the government to provide appropriate oversight of the health care system, certain government benefit programs, and compliance with certain civil rights laws.
Lawsuits and Legal Actions: We may disclose patient health information in response to (i) a court or administrative order or (ii) a subpoena, discovery request, or other lawful process that is not ordered by a court if efforts have been made to notify the patient or to obtain an order protecting the information requested.
Law Enforcement Purposes: We may disclose patient health information to a law enforcement official for a law enforcement purposes, such as to identify or locate a suspect, material witness or missing person or to alert law enforcement of a crime.
Coroners, Medical Examiners and Funeral Directors: We may disclose patient health information to a coroner, medical examiner or funeral director to allow them to carry out their duties.
Organ, Eye and Tissue Donation: We may use or disclose patient health information to organ procurement organizations or others that obtain, bank or transplant cadaveric organs, eyes or tissue for donation and transplant.
Research Purposes: We may use or disclose patient health information for research purposes pursuant to patient authorization waiver approval by an Institutional Review Board or Privacy Board.
Serious Threat to Health or Safety: We may use or disclose patient health information if we believe it is necessary to do so to prevent or lessen a serious threat to anyone’s health or safety.
Specialized Government Functions: We may disclose patient health information to the military (domestic or foreign) about its members or veterans, for national security and protective services for the President or other heads of state, to the government for security clearance reviews, and to a jail or prison about its inmates.
Workers’ Compensation: We may disclose patient health information to comply with workers’ compensation laws or similar programs that provide benefits for work-related injuries or illness.
Your Written Authorization for Any Other Use or Disclosure of Your Health Information
We will make other uses and disclosures of health information not discussed in this Notice only with your written authorization. You may revoke that authorization at any time in writing. Upon receipt of the written revocation, we will stop using or disclosing your health information for the reasons covered by the authorization going forward.
Your Rights with Respect to Your Health Information
You have the following rights with respect to certain health information that we have about you (information in a Designated Record Set as defined by HIPAA). To exercise any of these rights, you must submit a written request to our Privacy Official listed on the first page of this Notice.
Access: You may request to review or request a copy of your health information. We may deny your request under certain circumstances. You will receive written notice of a denial and can appeal it. We will provide a copy of your health information in a format you request if it is readily producible. If not readily producible, we will provide it in a hard copy format or other format that is mutually agreeable. If your health information is included in an Electronic Health Record, you have the right to obtain a copy of it in an electronic format and to direct us to send it to the person or entity you designate in an electronic format. We may charge a reasonable fee to cover our cost to provide you with copies of your health information.
Amend: If you believe that your health information is incorrect or incomplete, you may request that we amend it. We may deny your request under certain circumstances. You will receive written notice of denial and can file a statement of disagreement that will be included with your health information that you believe is incorrect or incomplete.
Restrict Use and Disclosure: You may request that we restrict uses of your health information to carry out treatment, payment, or health care operations or to your family member or friend involved in your care or the payment for your care. We may not (and are not required to) agree to your requested restrictions, with one exception. If you pay out of your pocket in full for a service you receive from us and you request that we not submit the claim for this service to your health insurer or health plan for reimbursement, we must honor that request.
Confidential Communications: Alternative Means, Alternative Locations. You may request to receive communications of health information by alternative means or at an alternative location. We will accommodate a request if it is reasonable and you indicate that communication by regular means could endanger you. When you submit a written request to the Privacy Official listed on the first page of this Notice, you need to provide an alternative method of contact or alternative address and indicate how payment for services will be handled.
Receive 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 paper copy of the Notice at any time (even if you have agreed to receive the Notice electronically). To obtain a paper copy, ask the Privacy Official.
We Have the Right to Change Our Privacy Practices and This Notice
Austin Children’s Dentistry reserves the right to change the terms of this Notice at any time. Any change will apply to the health information we have about you or create or receive in the future. We will promptly revise the Notice when there is a material change to the uses or disclosures, individual’s rights, our legal duties, or other privacy practices discussed in this Notice. We will post the revised Notice on our website (if applicable) and in our office and will provide a copy of it to you on request. The effective date of this Notice (including any updates) is in the top right-hand corner of the Notice.
To Make Privacy Complaints
If you have any complaints about your privacy rights or how your health information has been used or disclosed, you may file a complaint with us by contacting our Privacy Official listed on the first page of this Notice.
You may also file a written complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights. The privacy of your health information is important to us. We will not retaliate against you in any way if you choose to file a complaint.