Notice of Privacy Practices
This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed, and how you can obtain access to this information.
Please review it carefully.
Uses or Disclosures of Health Information
- When we set up an appointment for you.
- When our technician or doctor tests your eyes.
- When the doctor prescribes glasses or contact lenses.
- When the doctor prescribes medication.
- When our staff helps you select and order glasses or contact lenses.
- When we show you low vision aids.
- If we refer you to another doctor or clinic for eye care or low vision aids or services.
- If we send a prescription for glasses or contacts to another professional to be filled.
- When we provide a prescription for medication to a pharmacist.
- When we phone to let you know that your glasses or contact lenses are ready to be picked up.
- When our staff asks you about health or vision care plans that you may belong to, or about other sources of payment for our services.
- When we prepare bills to send to you or your health or vision care plan.
- When we process payment by credit card and when we try to collect unpaid amounts due.
- When bills or claims for payment are mailed, faxed, or sent by computer to you or your health or vision plan.
- When we occasionally have to ask a collection agency or attorney to help us with unpaid amounts due.
- A state or federal law that mandates certain health information be reported for a specific purpose.
- Public health purposes, such as contagious disease reporting, investigation or surveillance; and notices to and from the Food and Drug Administration regarding drugs or medical devices.
- Disclosures to governmental authorities about victims of suspected abuse, neglect or domestic violence.
- Uses and disclosures for health oversight activities, such as for the licensing of doctors, audits by Medicare or Medicaid, or investigation of possible violations of healthcare laws.
- Disclosures for judicial and administrative proceedings, such as in response to subpoenas or orders of courts or administrative agencies.
- Disclosures for law enforcement purposes, such as to provide information about someone who is or is suspected to be a victim of a crime; to provide information about a crime at our office; or to report a crime that happened somewhere else.
- Disclosure to a medical examiner to identify a dead person or to determine the cause of death; or to funeral directors to aid in burial; or to organizations that handle organ or tissue donations.
- Uses or disclosures for health related research.
- Uses and disclosures to prevent a serious threat to health or safety.
- Uses or disclosures for specialized government functions, such as for the protection of the president or high ranking government officials; for lawful national intelligence activities; for military purposes; or for the evaluation and health of members of the foreign service.
- Disclosures relating to workers’ compensation programs.
- Disclosures to business associates who perform healthcare operations for us and who agree to keep your health information private.
- You can ask us to communicate with you in a confidential way, such as by phoning you at work rather than at home, by mailing health information to a different address, or by using e-mail to your personal email address. We will accommodate these requests if they are reasonable, and if you pay us for any extra cost. If you want to ask for confidential communications, send a written request to Office Manager at the address, fax or e-mail shown at the beginning of this notice.
- You can ask to see or to get photocopies of your health information. By law, there are a few limited situations in which we can refuse to permit access or copying. Primarily, however, you will be able to review or have a copy of your health information within 30 days of asking us. You may have to pay for photocopies in advance. If we deny your request, we will send you a written explanation, and instructions about how to get an impartial review of our denial if one is legally required. By law, we can have one 30-day extension of the time for us to give you access or photocopies if we sent you a written notice of the extension. If you want to review or get photocopies of your health information, send a written request to Office Manager at the address, fax or e-mail shown at the beginning of this notice.
- You can ask us to amend your health information if you think that it is incorrect or incomplete. If we agree, we will amend the information within 60 days from when you ask us. We will send the corrected information to persons who we know got the wrong information, and others that you specify. If we do not agree, you can write a statement of your position, and we will include it with your health information along with any rebuttal statement that we may write. Once your statement of position and/or rebuttal is included in your health information, we will send it along whenever we make a permitted disclosure of your health information. By law, we can have one 30-day extension of time to consider a request for amendment if we notify you in writing of the extension. If you want to ask us to amend your health information, send a written request, including your reasons for the amendment, to Office Manager at the address, fax or e-mail shown at the beginning of this notice.
- You can get a list of the disclosures that we have made of your health information within the past six years (or a shorter period if you want), except disclosures for purposes of treatment, payment or health care operations, disclosures made in accordance with an authorization signed by you, and some other limited disclosures. You are entitled to one such list per year without charge. If you want more frequent lists, you will have to pay for them in advance. We will usually respond to your request within 60 days of receiving it, but by law we can have one 30-day extension of time if we notify you of the extension in writing. If you want a list, send a written request to Office Manager at the address, fax or e-mail shown at the beginning of this notice.