Letter: Privacy rule malfunction endangers young patients

David A. Fishel


To the editor:

Recently my wife and I took our daughter to the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., to see if they can figure out what is causing her illness and how to either treat this or cure the issue.

While she was receiving diagnostic testing and counseling from the doctors at Mayo, we (her parents) hit a “medical loophole” which is not only annoying but also downright dangerous. Please allow me a moment to explain this tangled mess.

Our daughter is 15 years old. She will turn 16 in December. She is caught up in a part of the new health care law that is supposed to “protect” her privacy. We all know this as the HIPPA regulations. Each time we visit a doctor’s office, medical clinic or hospital we sign about understanding “our HIPPA privacy rights” and how that specific institution or office interprets and applies the rules governing them.

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