Notice of Privacy Practices
This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully.
Also in PDF version
Who Will Follow This Notice
This notice describes the The Pill Club's privacy practices and that of:
- all departments and units of The Pill Club
- all employees, staff, contractors and other Pill Club personnel
All these entities, sites and locations are required to abide by the terms of the notice. In addition, these entities, sites and locations may share medical information with each other for treatment, payment or healthcare operations purposes described in this notice.
Our Pledge Regarding Medical Information
We understand that medical information about you and your health is personal and we are committed to protecting it. We create a record of the care and services you receive at The Pill Club. We need this record to provide you with quality care and to comply with certain legal requirements. This notice is required by law and applies to all of the records of your care generated by The Pill Club whether made by The Pill Club personnel or your personal doctor. Your personal doctor may have different policies or notices regarding the doctor’s use and disclosure of your medical information created in the doctor’s office. This notice will tell you about the ways in which we may use and disclose medical information about you. We also describe your rights and certain obligations we have regarding the use and disclosure of medical information.
We are required by law to:
- make sure that medical information that identifies you is kept private (with certain exceptions)
- give you this notice of our legal duties and privacy practices with respect to medical information about you and
- follow the terms of the notice that is currently in effect
How we may use and disclose medical information about you
The following categories describe different ways that we use and disclose medical information. For each category of uses or disclosures we will explain what we mean and try to give some examples. Not every use or disclosure in a category will be listed. However, all of the ways we are permitted to use and disclose information will fall within one of the categories.
We may use medical information about you to provide you with medical treatment or services. We may disclose medical information about you to doctors, nurses, technicians, medical students, or other Pill Club personnel who are involved in providing The Pill Club's services. For example, Pill Club personnel may discuss your prescription with your doctor to ensure we dispense the appropriate drug.
We may use and disclose medical information about you so that the services you receive from The Pill Club may be billed to and payment may be collected from you, an insurance company or a third party. For example, we may need to give your health plan information about your prescription so your health plan will pay us.
For Healthcare Operations
We may use and disclose medical information about you for healthcare operations. These uses and disclosures are necessary to run The Pill Club and make sure that all of our patients receive quality care. For example, we may use medical information to review our treatment and services and to evaluate the performance of our staff in caring for you. We may also combine medical information about many Pill Club patients to decide what additional services The Pill Club should offer and what services are needed. We may also combine the medical information we have with medical information from other providers to compare how we are doing and see where we can make improvements in the care and services we offer. We may remove information that identifies you from this set of medical information so others may use it to study health care and health care delivery without learning who the specific patients are.
We may use and disclose medical information to contact you as a reminder that you have an upcoming refill.
We may use and disclose medical information to tell you about or recommend possible treatment options or alternatives that may be of interest to you.
Health-Related Products and Services
We may use and disclose medical information to tell you about our health-related products or services that may be of interest to you.
We have the right to use medical information about you to contact you in an effort to encourage you to purchase or use a product or service. If we receive any direct or indirect payment for making such a communication, however, we would need your prior written permission to contact you. The only exceptions for seeking such permission are when our communication (i) describes only a drug or medication that is currently being prescribed for you and our payment for the communication is reasonable in amount or (ii) is made by one of our business partners consistent with our written agreement with the business partner.
Individuals Involved in Your Care or Payment for Your Care
We may release medical information about you to a friend or family member who is involved in your medical care. We may also give information to someone who helps pay for your care. Unless there is a specific written request from you to the contrary, we may also tell your family or friends your condition and that you are a part of The Pill Club. In addition, we may disclose medical information about you to an entity assisting in a disaster relief effort so that your family can be notified about your condition, status and location.
Under certain circumstances, we may use and disclose medical information about you for research purposes. For example, a research project may involve comparing the health and recovery of all patients who received one medication to those who received another, for the same condition. All research projects, however, are subject to a special approval process. This process evaluates a proposed research project and its use of medical information, trying to balance the research needs with patients’ need for privacy of their medical information. Before we use or disclose medical information for research, the project will have been approved through this research approval process, but we may, however, disclose medical information about you to people preparing to conduct a research project, for example, to help them look for patients with specific medical needs, so long as the medical information they review does not leave The Pill Club's possession. We will almost always ask for your specific permission if the researcher will have access to your name, address or other information that reveals who you are.
As Required By Law
We will disclose medical information about you when required to do so by federal, California or local law.
To Avert a Serious Threat to Health or Safety
We may use and disclose medical information about you when necessary to prevent a serious threat to your health and safety or the health and safety of the public or another person. Any disclosure, however, would only be to someone able to help prevent the threat.
Military and Veterans
If you are a member of the armed forces, we may release medical information about you as required by military command authorities. We may also release medical information about foreign military personnel to the appropriate foreign military authority.
We may release medical information about you for workers’ compensation or similar programs. These programs provide benefits for work-related injuries or illness.
Public Health Risks
We may disclose medical information about you for public health activities. These activities generally include the following:
- to prevent or control disease, injury or disability
- to report deaths
- to report the abuse or neglect of children, elders and dependent adults
- to report reactions to medications or problems with products
- to notify people of recalls of products they may be using
- to notify a person who may have been exposed to a disease or may be at risk for contracting or spreading a disease or condition
- to notify the appropriate government authority if we believe a patient has been the victim of abuse, neglect or domestic violence. We will only make this disclosure if you agree or when required or authorized by law.
Health Oversight Activities
We may disclose medical information to a health oversight agency for activities authorized by law. These oversight activities include, for example, audits, investigations, inspections, and licensure. These activities are necessary for the government to monitor the health care system, government programs, and compliance with civil rights laws.
Organ or Tissue Procurement Organizations
Consistent with applicable law, we may disclose medical information about you to organ procurement organizations or other entities engaged in the procurement, banking, or transplantation of organs for the purpose of tissue donation and transplant.
Lawsuits and Disputes
If you are involved in a lawsuit or a dispute, we may disclose medical information about you in response to a court or administrative order. We may also disclose medical information about you in response to a subpoena, discovery request, or other lawful process by someone else involved in the dispute, but only if efforts have been made to tell you about the request (which may include written notice to you) or to obtain an order protecting the information requested.
We may release medical information if asked to do so by a law enforcement official:
- in response to a court order, subpoena, warrant, summons or similar process
- to identify or locate a suspect, fugitive, material witness, or missing person
- about the victim of a crime if, under certain limited circumstances, we are unable to obtain the person’s agreement
- about a death we believe may be the result of criminal conduct
- about criminal conduct at The Pill Club and
- in emergency circumstances to report a crime; the location of the crime or victims; or the identity, description or location of the person who committed
Coroners, Medical Examiners and Funeral Directors
We may release medical information to a coroner or medical examiner. This may be necessary, for example, to identify a deceased person or determine the cause of death. We may also release medical information about patients of The Pill Club to funeral directors as necessary to carry out their duties.
National Security and Intelligence Activities
We may release medical information about you to authorized federal officials for intelligence, counterintelligence, and other national security activities authorized by law.
Protective Services for the President and Others
We may disclose medical information about you to authorized federal officials so they may provide protection to the President, other authorized persons or foreign heads of state or conduct special investigations.
If you are an inmate of a correctional institution or under the custody of a law enforcement official, we may release medical information about you to the correctional institution or law enforcement official. This release would be necessary (1) for the institution to provide you with health care; (2) to protect your health and safety or the health and safety of others; or (3) for the safety and security of the correctional institution.
If you would like us to share your Protected Health Information with anyone besides you, we will need you to complete and sign an Authorization for the Use/Disclosure of Health Information. Please fill out this form instead if you are from Texas, or this form if you are from New Jersey.
If you previously provided us with an Authorization for the Use/Disclosure of Health Information and would now like to revoke it, please complete and sign a Revocation of Authorization to Disclose Protected Health Information. Please fill out this form instead if you are from Texas, or this form if you are from New Jersey.
If you would like to request a copy of your medical records, please fill out and sign the Patient Request for Health Information. Please fill out this form instead if you are from Texas, or this form if you are from New Jersey.
Your rights regarding medical information about you
You have the following rights regarding medical information we maintain about you:
Right to Inspect and Copy
You have the right to inspect and copy medical information that may be used to make decisions about your care. Usually, this includes medical and billing records, but may not include some mental health information. If your medical information is maintained in an electronic health record, you may obtain an electronic copy of your medical information and, if you choose, instruct us to transmit such copy directly to an entity or person you designate in a clear, conspicuous and specific manner.
To inspect and copy medical information that may be used to make decisions about you, you must submit your request in writing to The Pill Club's Privacy Officer at the address listed at the end of this notice. An authorization form must be completed. If you request a copy of the information, we may charge a fee for the costs of copying, mailing or other supplies associated with your request. Our fee for providing you an electronic copy of your medical information will not exceed our labor costs in responding to your request for the electronic copy (or summary or explanation).
We may deny your request to inspect and copy in certain very limited circumstances. If you are denied access to medical information, you may request that the denial be reviewed. Another licensed health care professional chosen by The Pill Club will review your request and the denial. The person conducting the review will not be the person who denied your request. We will comply with the outcome of the review.
Right to Amend
If you feel that medical information we have about you is incorrect or incomplete, you may ask us to amend the information. You have the right to request an amendment for as long as the information is kept by or for The Pill Club. To request an amendment, your request must be made in writing and submitted to The Pill Club's Privacy Officer at the address listed at the end of this notice. In addition, you must provide a reason that supports your request. We will not process your request if it is not in writing or does not tell us why you think the amendment is appropriate. We will act on your request within 60 days (or 90 days if the extra time is needed), and will inform you in writing as to whether the amendment will be made or denied.
We may deny your request for an amendment if it is not in writing or does not include a reason to support the request. In addition, we may deny your request if you ask us to amend information that:
- was not created by us, unless the person or entity that created the information is no longer available to make the amendment
- is not part of the medical information kept by or for The Pill Club
- is not part of the information which you would be permitted to inspect and copy or
- is accurate and complete
Even if we deny your request for amendment, you have the right to submit a written addendum, not to exceed 250 words, with respect to any item or statement in your record you believe is incomplete or incorrect. If you clearly indicate in writing that you want the addendum to be made part of your medical record we will attach it to your records and include it whenever we make a disclosure of the item or statement you believe to be incomplete or incorrect.
Right to an Accounting of Disclosures
You have the right to request an “accounting of disclosures.” This is a list of the disclosures we made of medical information about you other than our own uses for treatment, payment and health care operations, (as those functions are described above) and with other expectations pursuant to the law. The list will not include certain disclosures that are a byproduct of another use or disclosure permitted under our privacy policies or by law, those made under an authorization provided by you, those made directly to you or your family or friends or for disaster relief purposes. Neither will the list include disclosures we have made for national security purposes or to law enforcement personnel, or disclosures made more than six years prior to the date of the request.
Right to Request Restrictions
You have the right to request a restriction or limitation on the medical information we use or disclose about you for treatment, payment or healthcare operations. You also have the right to request a limit on the medical information we disclose about you to someone who is involved in your care or the payment for your care, like a family member or friend. For example, you could ask that we not use or disclose information about a service you had. We are not required to agree to your request, unless the disclosure is to a health plan for a payment or health care operation purpose and the medical information relates solely to a health care item or service for which we have been paid out-of- pocket in full. If we honor your request, we will comply with your request unless the information is needed to provide you emergency treatment. To request restrictions, you must make your request in writing to The Pill Club's Privacy Officer at the address listed at the end of this notice. In your request, you must tell us (1) what information you want to limit; (2) whether you want to limit our use, disclosure or both; and (3) to whom you want the limits to apply, for example, disclosures to your spouse.
Right to Request Confidential Communications
You have the right to request that we communicate with you about medical matters in a certain way or at a certain location. For example, you can ask that we only contact you at work or by mail. To request confidential communications, you must make your request to The Pill Club's Privacy Officer at the number provided at the end of this notice. We will not ask you the reason for Your request. We will accommodate all reasonable requests. Your request must specify how or where you wish to be contacted.
Right to a Paper Copy of This Notice
You have the right to a paper copy of this notice. You may ask us to give you a copy of this notice at any time. Even if you have agreed to receive this notice electronically, you are still entitled to a paper copy of this notice. You may obtain a copy of this notice at our website at www.thepillclub.com. To obtain a paper copy of this notice contact The Pill Club’s Privacy Officer at the number provided at the end of this notice.
Changes to This Notice
We reserve the right to change our privacy practices and to make any such change applicable to the PHI we obtained about you before the change. If a change in our practices in material, we will revise this Notice to reflect the change. We will post a copy of the current notice on thepillclub.com.
If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with The Pill Club or with the Office of Civil Rights, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. To file a complaint with The Pill Club, contact The Pill Club's Privacy Officer at the address listed at the end of this notice. All complaints must be submitted in writing. You will not be penalized for filing a complaint.
Other Uses Of Medical Information
Other uses and disclosures of medical information not covered by this notice or the laws that apply to us will be made only with your written permission. If you provide us permission to use or disclose medical information about you, you may revoke that permission, in writing, at any time. If you revoke your permission, this will stop any further use or disclosure of your medical information for the purposes covered by your written authorization, except if we have already acted in reliance on your permission. You understand that we are unable to take back any disclosures we have already made with your permission, and that we are required to retain our records of the care that we provided to you.
To the extent required by law, when using or disclosing your medical information or when requesting your medical information from another covered entity, we will make reasonable efforts not to use, disclose or request more than a limited data set (as defined below) of your medical information or, if needed by us, no more than the minimum amount of medical information necessary to accomplish the intended purpose of the use, disclosure or request, taking into consideration practical and technological limitations.
A limited data set means medical information that excludes the following items:
(ii) Postal address information, other than town or city, State, and zip code;
(iii) Telephone numbers;
(iv) Fax numbers;
(v) Electronic mail addresses;
(vi) Social security numbers;
(vii) Medical record numbers;
(viii) Health plan beneficiary numbers;
(ix) Account numbers;
(x) Certificate/license numbers;
(xi) Vehicle identifiers and serial numbers, including license plate numbers;
(xii) Device identifiers and serial numbers;
(xiii) Web Universal Resource Locators (URLs);
(xiv) Internet Protocol (IP) address numbers;
(xv) Biometric identifiers, including finger and voice prints; and
(xvi) Full face photographic images and any comparable images.
Address all correspondence in writing to The Pill Club's Privacy Officer, Dr. Linda Panofsky, or call 772-217-4557. Effective Date: April 2016