HIPAA question

  1. I lost my notebook after clinicals. It had all my data in it for next week's care plan. However, there was no identifying data that would allow a random finder of said notebook to figure out who I was talking about; no name, initials, room number, etc., just a bunch of data (lab values, vs, history, etc.) Should I be worried about a HIPAA violation, or is it enough to worry about the fact that I can't complete my care plan because I don't have any data? I was under the impression that it's not a violation so long as there is no identifying information, but now that I've lost my notebook I'm freaking out just a little and hoping for some clarification/reassurance.
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  2. 11 Comments

  3. by   amyk_ncsu
    Well, my first instinct is to say no. This is exactly one of the reasons WHY we are not allowed to put identifying factors in what we take out of the hospital. I'd say you are okay... other than of coures losing your care plan! That sucks, good luck!!!
  4. by   allthingsbright
    We are told we can take the MAR out of one of our facilites as long as we tear off and shred any identifying info. In another institution, that would be a violation of their policies for HIPPA and we would be put on clin. probation.

    I think you are fine...I just wouldn't broadcast that you lost it?? We had a girl a few years ago go to the bathroom during clinical and some of her papers fell out of her pocket w/ meds and treatments for her patient on them--she got put on probabtion for it and there was no ID on that stuff either. I think some instructors are pretty inconsistent. Just be REALLY careful and sorry you lost your stuff.
  5. by   whitecap1
    Make sure you let your instructors know ASAP. Dont try to hide it until you somehow find the notebook. Chances are they will hear about it from a nurse on the floor or whatever and they will be more upset about you hiding it. We all make mistakes, but keep your instructors well aware of them. (after all, you are working under their licence)
    They like to know about stuff even if it is know big deal (like in this case, no biggie) but it lets them know that you are being responsible and that you are always trying to think about Hippa
  6. by   Jules A
    Quote from whitecap1
    Make sure you let your instructors know ASAP.
    As painful as this might be I'd have to agree. If the notes get found and turned in it could be bad even if its not a Hippa violation. I think biting the bullet and speaking to a trusted instructor would be a good idea. Best wishes to you!
  7. by   jov
    Quote from trellimana
    I lost my notebook after clinicals. It had all my data in it for next week's care plan. However, there was no identifying data that would allow a random finder of said notebook to figure out who I was talking about; no name, initials, room number, etc., just a bunch of data (lab values, vs, history, etc.) Should I be worried about a HIPAA violation
    O.k. Let's think logically about this. Suppose someone does find the notebook. If what you say is correct, just exactly how are they going to file a complaint with HHS if there is no patient identified? I mean, are they going to send in the notebook and tell them to match it up with one of the 300 million U.S. citizens, or are they going to send it in on behalf of John Doe? You have to actually have a person identified to file a complaint on behalf of. A bunch of data doesn't count.

    I wouldn't report it. You've done nothing wrong.
  8. by   Lammmster
    I agree that you should make your instructor aware of the situation and the advice you got from everyone is excellent
    Quote from whitecap1
    Make sure you let your instructors know ASAP. Dont try to hide it until you somehow find the notebook. Chances are they will hear about it from a nurse on the floor or whatever and they will be more upset about you hiding it. We all make mistakes, but keep your instructors well aware of them. (after all, you are working under their licence)
    They like to know about stuff even if it is know big deal (like in this case, no biggie) but it lets them know that you are being responsible and that you are always trying to think about Hippa
  9. by   trellimana
    Thanks so much guys, you've made me feel much better. I have no choice really but to inform my CI, as I won't be able to turn in a completed care plan without my lab values and medications list. I have to face her tomorrow so I'll let you know how it goes.
  10. by   trellimana
    Just an update after my clinicals - I told my CI what happened, and she assured me it was no big deal since there was no identifying information in there. I did turn in my half-care-plan minus vs, labs, meds, and other data but I did what I could with the information I had (from memory). And you'd better believe that this week I held on to that folder for all it was worth!
  11. by   jov
    Quote from trellimana
    Just an update after my clinicals - I told my CI what happened, and she assured me it was no big deal since there was no identifying information in there.
    So... you're saying I was right?
  12. by   58flyer
    Quote from jov
    So... you're saying I was right?
    Jov dear, you're always right...right?
  13. by   jov
    Quote from 58flyer
    Jov dear, you're always right...right?
    ROFLMAO :spin: :spin: :spin: :spin: :spin: :spin:

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