Is It OK to take photos of face sheets for billing purposes?

  1. As a CCT nurse, I am reimbursed from the company per trip. I am an independent contractor and was told I need to provide an invoice with the name of the patient, where they were picked up, where they were transported to, date, time of run and unit number.

    I have been taking pictures of the face sheets in order to put together my list to submit for billing purposes.

    Is this OK? I don't think it violates any HIPAA because I am strictly using it for work related/billing purposes. These photos/copies of face sheets will be destroyed/shredded once I have submitted the invoice and have been paid. Am I right?
  2. Visit CSUSM10 profile page

    About CSUSM10

    Joined: May '10; Posts: 163; Likes: 23

    2 Comments

  3. by   JKL33
    Is it possible to require that the client provide a copy of the facesheet to you for your billing purposes (even if it is a copy in addition to some copy they have already provided for another use)? I base this thought on the idea that this is exactly what EMS units do when they transport a patient, rather than individual medics taking pics of the facesheet that is already available.

    That doesn't eliminate your need to keep that information safe, of course, but your file of facesheets is arguably less easily compromised than your phone. (?)

    Or - is there an app which purports to be HIPAA secure into which you could enter the info in real time? This is obviously a business site, but might have info to get you started in the right direction.

    I wouldn't just take photos with native camera and leave them there on my personal phone in unsecured format until you decide to compile your log if that's what you're asking.

    ETA: Clarification:

    Quote from CSUSM10
    Is this OK? I don't think it violates any HIPAA because I am strictly using it for work related/billing purposes. These photos/copies of face sheets will be destroyed/shredded once I have submitted the invoice and have been paid. Am I right?
    To me, taking the pic isn't the issue any more than having someone hand you a face sheet would be. How you use and store the information (appropriately and securely) is the main HIPAA-related issue.

    Interested to hear what others think!
    Last edit by JKL33 on Jun 1
  4. by   Wuzzie
    Why doesn't the sending hospital just give you one? That seems odd to me. At any rate if you are taking pictures on your personal cell phone that's a big no-no. You must have an encrypted app like Haiku to do this.

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