registry requesting access to my medical files
- 2Dec 8, '10 by scrabble nurseHi,
A registry I was applying for online emailed me a bunch of forms to sign and I was taken aback by one of them. It was a medical release form for my medical records! The form also requested my doctors name, phone number and address. I understand a new employer requesting a physical, ppd, and immunization forms, but I feel like this is an invasion of privacy. I asked the human resource director at another agency I work for his opinion. He stated it doesn't sound kosher and I shouldn't sign.
What are your thoughts?
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- 13Dec 8, '10 by caliotter3I would not sign these papers. No employer has wanted more than the usual preemployment exams or a return to work release. Getting access to all of your medical records gives them access to private info that has nothing to do with your ability to do your job. Better to find another agency.
- 4Dec 8, '10 by TakeOneI agree that it's not kosher. Employers have a need to know a limited amount about the medical status of applicants and new hires such as immunization status, PPDs and/or chest x-rays, medications, previous injuries, comp claims, work restrictions and other records that pertain only to employee health files that they are mandated to keep. For many of these things, they are required to take your word for it at time of hire. They are not required to keep records of your entire health history and therefore have no need to know and no right to all records. Unless they can give you a good reason for requesting your medical records, don't release them.
- 3Dec 8, '10 by JoytoWorldHighly suspicious request.
HIPPA only requires the individual's PERMISSION to release the records. Once you sign a release they have all access. SO THEY CAN ASK PERMISSION, BUT WHY ARE THEY ASKING?
Not all States require physical fitness exams for healthcare work. Most require TB screening. Immunizations are not required by some States although many hospitals/facilities require them for certain positions, such as rubella for work in labor/delivery but may not be required for work on med surg.
For nearly all job related functions the company does not need a copy of your medical records and if they are smart they will not ask. The exception is WORKER'S COMPENSATION injury/illness and even then they only get medical data related to the injury /illness you claim, NOT your entire medical history.
Check to see if your State requires physical FITNESS EXAMS for healthcare work. If if it does, the MD only has to indicate if you are able to perform the job. It's a YES /NO response. No medical information. Your medical info is between you and your doctor. The doctor will need a copy of the JOB DESCRIPTION for the job you seek, to determine if you can do the job, then will issue a YES you can do it letter or NO you cannot, or can do it with these specific limitations. Please note, if the MD states that you can PART of the job, but not all of the job, then you do not qualify as the job is written.
The same process is true if you are returning from work after injury/illness.
If you can do the job but need reasonable MEDICAL ACCOMMODATION then you still qualify. Example: you apply for a secretary position, you can type but have carpal tunnel so need a special keyboard (accommodation). A special keyboard request is reasonable. If the job requires you to lift 50 pounds and you cannot lift 50 pounds you do not qualify. The company can still hire you, it is their decision.
If you want to work for them, ask for a copy of the job description. Go to your doctor and request a letter that indicates your ability to perform the job duties. If the MD says YES, then you qualify medically. No need for a release of your medical records.
- 4Dec 8, '10 by JoytoWorldThe asking is not the illegal part.
They can ask, though it is not wise.
Think of the EEO questions most employers ask about your gender and race, yet they cannot by law, deny you a job based on your answer. Yet how can you prove you did not get the job because you are female or hispanic or asian after you answer the questions?
They can ask.
They cannot discriminate by denying you an opportunity for a job based on a decision after reviewing your medical history if the decision was based on any of your public policy rights: right to employment opportunity regardless of age, race/color/nationality, gender, disability if qualified etc. much of which info is in your medical records. But how do you prove you did not get the job for a decision based on any of these reasons?
You do have a right to refuse to release your medical records: HIPPA.
Not all employers are wise, but it does not prevent you from being so. Their main objective is probably to know you can do the job physically. A letter from your MD based on the job description could do that. You protect your medical history and they know you can do the job physically.
- 1Dec 8, '10 by vampiregirlI agree with the other posters who agree that is this is a little suspicious, I wouldn't feel comfortable signing that form. I don't have anything I need to hide from an employer, but still...
Just for "fun" though if it were me, I might be tempted to call and politely inquire why they need that info and what they do with it.