HIPAA help

  1. I have a quick question about HIPAA. My sister and I got into a super big fight and I said something about her gastric bypass surgery on Facebook which was supposed to be a secret. Now some of her friends are saying since I am a nurse, i can get in trouble for HIPAA violation. I don't know where or exactly when she had the surgery, don't work at the hospital where she had it done that I know of, didn't ask any information about it or anything so how can it be a HIPAA violation? Because I am a nurse, can I not say anything about anyone's medical condition. I thought it was only if she was a patient in the same hospital I work at and was trying to get info on her while she is there. Any thoughts.
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  2. 42 Comments

  3. by   Jolie
    What you did was lousy from a personal standpoint, but not a HIPAA violation. You had no professional nurse-patient relationship and thus no access to, nor duty to protect your sister's confidential health information.
  4. by   neuroms
    Yeah, those sound more like personal rather than professional problems.
  5. by   RNKPCE
    Not a HIPAA violation. You don't work for the surgeon that did it, the hospital in which she was a patient or the insurance company or anyone else involved in the case.
  6. by   rngreenhorn
    The Health Insurance and Accountablity Act is wayyyyyyyy over-rated. And way over taught in Nursing School. Tell your sister to suck it up and to stop being a wussy. No one is going to prison here.
  7. by   neuroms
    Ha, I'm not sure if it's taught at all: "Health Insurance and Accountablity Act."
  8. by   merlee
    It may not be a HIPAA violation, but you may have done your relationship some bad damage
  9. by   BabyLady
    Quote from 2greeneyes
    I have a quick question about HIPAA. My sister and I got into a super big fight and I said something about her gastric bypass surgery on Facebook which was supposed to be a secret. Now some of her friends are saying since I am a nurse, i can get in trouble for HIPAA violation. I don't know where or exactly when she had the surgery, don't work at the hospital where she had it done that I know of, didn't ask any information about it or anything so how can it be a HIPAA violation? Because I am a nurse, can I not say anything about anyone's medical condition. I thought it was only if she was a patient in the same hospital I work at and was trying to get info on her while she is there. Any thoughts.
    Nope, you are not guilty of a HIPAA violation because you did not obtain the information through your employment or facility. You had the information because she was your sister. You are guilty of gossiping, nothing more. Gossiping about events that are TRUE is not a crime.

    Your friends are wrong...so sleep well. They are just trying to feed the drama.
  10. by   nightengalegoddess
    Health insurance and portability privacy act...??? Health information patient privacy act? I think it is the second one....though I have heard it anacronymed out other ways as well.
  11. by   thinkertdm
    Quote from nightengalegoddess
    Health insurance and portability privacy act...??? Health information patient privacy act? I think it is the second one....though I have heard it anacronymed out other ways as well.
    Basic research saves the day!
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HIPAA

    HIPAA=Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act
  12. by   ckh23
    I agree with the others, there is no HIPPA violation here. To me it sounds like your sister's friends need to do their own research about HIPPA and what it provides.
  13. by   Esme12
    You did not misuse the health care information while having access to private information at work.

    HIPAA: http://tinyurl.com/3xqjzet

    YOu broke a promise to your sister to keep quiet..........not to keep confidential one of your patients diagnosis's. But if you have trouble with boundries and confidences in your private life........you need to be extra careful in your professional life as a mistake here IS a big deal and can cost you your license.....
  14. by   rngreenhorn
    Oops, My bad, I missed the "portability" in my post. What HIPAA really stands for is "bureaucracy and paperwork that no one but JCAHO looks at, and no one cares about, but that makes our job more difficult." But that acronym would be way to long.....

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