THCB

ACA Database: How Do I Report a HIPAA Violation?

I know my HIPAA rights were violated and would like to know the best recourse to settle the matter. By myself or via an attorney?Can you suggest a referral agency for attorneys?

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  1. Here’s my question for the HIPAA experts out there: how does one report improper use of the HIPAA rule to BLOCK access to information a patient is entitled to? This happens all the time. Does HHS have a reporting mechanism? Does the law mandate any penalties? Does it even touch on this?

  2. HIPAA was notable for NOT providing a “private right of action”– individuals can’t start a lawsuit against a perp under the HIPAA laws, only the government can. Googling “report a HIPAA violation” gets you to the HHS mechanism for letting the government know about a HIPAA concern. The gummint lawyers decide whether to proceed or not.

    That being said, people can always sue people, as a tort under common law. Part of the mechanism in that kind of proceeding is both establishing 1) that the defendant had a duty to the complaining party, and 2) that the defendant breeched that duty. Recently, the existence of HIPAA standards has been suggested as supporting assertions in both those parts of a common law tort.

    Before spending a lot of time on a tort lawsuit, know that you will also have to show actual harm–some kind of injury/ damage to your wellbeing resulting from the event–that can be quantified for recompense through a court judgement. Typically, personal injury lawyers are pretty good at that part of the process.

    I hope that helps a bit.

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