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A law that has impacted the aid of human services would be the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act known as the HIPAA. This law was created in 1966 in order to guarantee its clients privacy and confidentiality as they are being serviced and aided. This act is responsible for protecting and defending when they obtain service from health care organizations. The best thing is that legal action can be taken for if any violation from the organization is committed which would be in favor of the client if they are the victim of the certain violation. This paper will discuss many facts and information about the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act such as its purpose, how it affects social workers day-to-day operations, issues found against the act, and the consequences one would face if they decided to disobey the act and its rules.

There is something called the “Privacy Rule” under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, it is pretty self explanatory, but what the rule enforces is that the employees should not share information on clients to anyone else other than the clients. The information is basically records of the clients for example, billing, hospital records, and more. The leader of the organization is expected to enforce this rule because no matter the situation they are not to discuss the case information. There is no penalty for sharing the records and information with the client of the case that is being handled. The consent of the client is also needed for any changes to their information which shows the seriousness of this rule, for example even doctors require the sufficient permission to acquire records from the organization as well. There is a form called Patient Release of Information where the client is to sign giving the organization permission to share their information with the doctor. If other health organizations or health departments desire a clients information and record there is another form that is required signing from the client. This form is known as the Consent of Release Information. This document states what information will be released, to who it is being released to,

This Privacy Rule is a trait that makes this act a reliable one since it takes into consideration of the client’s rights to provide the best service.  This law has a big effect on the day-to-day operations within the human service organization for example the CheckPoint we have done earlier this week. The Privacy Rule, alone, prevents employees from discussing the cases they are handling. Getting caught discussing them can bring upon a big penalty on both of the employees. This prevents employees from other conveniences such as asking for some advice on how to handle a case due to the certain situation of the patient. So if you are in need of assistance of someone else’s ethical views, you will not find it at work and that would change the typical social life in the workplace.  The rule prohibits the employee working on a client’s case to share any information of the case with anyone. That includes doctors, staff members, nurses, other patients, and any other medical personnel. The only for them to share information with the health department, there is a procedure where I mentioned earlier involving the release form and such. Also the hired personnel t o deal with the privacy enforcement, privacy employees, could easily affect one’s daily routine by being down the socials workers throat to prevent violating the clients. This is normally a procedure taken by the head of the organization to ensure protection which requires money from the organization. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act is practically in charge of the workers’ social life and conduct.

Clients who have had their privacy violated by the social workers are able to file a complaint against the organization. They have the option to send it to the social workers or to the Office for Civil Rights via written letter. The Office for Civil Right would measure the penalty for the clients that have gotten their privacy violated. The level of the penalty depends on the measure made by the Office for Civil Rights which serves as a direct relationship, the more the measurement the more severe the penalty. The penalty is a fine and the fine increases with the severity of the violation. After research, the United States Department of Health and Human Services states the results of severe penalties. If there is a situation where someone acquired or distributed the information protected by this law, they would most likely receive criminal fines and charges. The fines that applies to criminal penalties can vary from $50,000 or a year in prison, $100,000 or five years in prison, or the extreme penalty $250,000 or 10 years in prison. Of course it depends on how severe the criminal penalties are, the more severe the more money and time given up by the criminal.

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability in an attempt to expand their services tried to offer more and different types of protections for their clients. Maybe there were some negative criticism and bad feedback towards their old service, I was unable to find more information on their intent. One example of the extra service was a protection for trading a client’s information with another party. Issues soon came after this idea was proposed and put into action, this issues were flaws involving protecting the information. Basically Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act handle most of the security of the client’s rights as is, and so

In conclusion, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act apply to every health and medical department and their information, to prevent illegal distribution of one’s personal information. Information consists of a client’s medical records, medical bills, address, and other personal information kept in their filed records. Without this act one cannot tell what another can do with varies information. Having the knowledge of someone’s social security number can jeopardize that person’s life and so imagine having that knowledge and more because there is no protection on sharing someone’s else’s personally information. This is what makes this act a necessary, giving the client the control to have his or her information shared and preventing certain exposure.

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