HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices

HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices

You Don't Have to Sign

1. Patients are not required to sign any HIPAA form, including the statement acknowledging your receipt of the Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP).

2. The Federal HIPAA Rule only requires a provider to make a "good faith effort" to obtain the patient's signature on the HIPAA form - 45 CFR 164.520(c)(2)(ii).

3. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services gives directions to facilities on how to respond when a patient exercises their right to refuse to sign any HIPAA form.

4. For more information, go to our web page: "HIPAA Hurt Me".

5. You can share your HIPAA story.

6. HIPAA definitions are often much more broad and expansive than you may expect. For example, the definitions of Treatment, Payment, and Health Care Operations are hundreds of words long.

Note: The HIPAA NPP is not the same as a consent form, although sometimes it is incorporated in the consent form. Click here for examples of consent forms and recommendations.



Signing or refusing to sign, however, does not provide you with any privacy protection. HIPAA is a data-sharing law. Your consent is not required before your data is shared. Under HIPAA, according to the federal government, there are potentially 2.2 million entities (including 1.5 million "business associates") that could be given access to your private data without your consent, unless your state has stronger patient privacy laws. 


Why You Should Not Sign

In the event that your data is broadly shared without your consent and you issue a complaint about the disclosure or use of your data, the clinic staff and attorneys will not be able to say that you signed the form acknowledging you know your data can be shared under HIPAA. The staff will not be able to tell you that with was your responsibility not to share confiential data with your doctor. They will not be able to blame YOU for sharing data that they disclose without your consent.

NOTE: If you refuse to sign the HIPAA privacy form, some clinics or doctors or hospitals may refuse to provide treatment to you or your children. This is in clear violation of your rights — but we have discovered that some staff might not be aware that it is. Be gentle, but firm.

Consider contacting us to request wallet-size cards to give to the staff.



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