Would this maybe fall under "reasonable" and may depend upon the size of the
CE? Great question.  Interested to see what others have to say.  

Patricia Hamby
HIPAA Compliance Project Manager
XANTUS Healthplan of Tennessee, Inc. 
(615) 463-1612, Office
(615) 279-1301, Facsimile
http://www.xantushealthplan.com/hipaa/page3.html


-----Original Message-----
From: Noel Chang [mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]]
Sent: Monday, February 17, 2003 3:35 PM
To: WEDI SNIP Privacy Workgroup List
Subject: Re: acknowledgement of Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP)


I haven't taken the time to research this enough to cite any references in 
support of my position, but my initial reaction is that just mailing the NPP

is not adequate to make a good faith effort.

The requirement is that you make a good faith effort to obtain written 
acknowledgment of their receipt of the NPP.  If all you do is mail the NPP, 
what have to done to try and document they received it?  If you have a
return 
form for the patient to send back I guess you can then argue that you did do

something to try and obtain their acknowledgment but is just a form with no 
return envelope or postage a "good faith effort"?  I'd say no but that is 
just my opinion.

Even if you included a return envelope and postage I don't know that I would

consider that a good faith effort.  The Rule says you have to distribute the

notice by the first delivery of service.  For the moment lets ignore 
electronic delivery of service or of the NPP.  That aside, if you only have 
to deliver the notice the first time the individual physically sets foot in 
your facility, how hard is it to get someone to hand them a couple of sheets

of paper and sign an acknowledgment?  Keep in mind the acknowledgment is
just 
that they RECEIVED the Notice.  Not that they read it, not that they 
understand it.  You can hand it to them, they can through it in the trash 
(hopefully a recycling bin so you can use it on the next patient), and you 
can still ask them to sign a statement that says they RECEIVED the Notice.

Unless you are one of the rare entities that have implemented a truly 
paperless patient record system, you have a paper chart for every patient.  
Someone in your facility is probably handling that chart when the patient 
comes in.  If the reception of patients into your facility is not
centralized 
so you cannot hand out the forms at one patient check-in desk, then perhaps 
you need to de-centralize the distribution of the NPP.  Whoever sees the 
patient needs to look at the chart and determine if the patient has received

an NPP or if they need to be given one.  One thing I am doing with some 
clients is implementing an NPP Receipt Acknowledgment form that is on a 
distinct color paper so you can immediately recognize whether or not there
is 
an acknowledgment form in the chart.  Remember you only need to get their 
acknowledgment once, even if you subsequently revise the Notice, so there is

no need to look at the acknowledgment to see when they signed it, what 
version of the NPP they were given, or anything else.  Just glance at the 
chart to see if there is a fuscia piece of paper (or whatever unique color 
you prefer).  If there isn't, ask them to sign an acknowledgment form as you

hand them a copy of your NPP.

I work only with small group practices and solo practitioners so I'm sure 
there are issues for larger players, asside from pure volume of patients, 
that I have not had to consider.  I have to admit though, I never thought
the 
requirement to distribute the NPP and obtain an acknowledgment would require

any additional resources like part time employees.

Noel Chang
Noel Chang

 

--
Open WebMail Project (http://openwebmail.org)


---------- Original Message -----------
From: [EMAIL PROTECTED]
To: "WEDI SNIP Privacy Workgroup List" <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
Sent: Mon, 17 Feb 2003 14:27:30 -0500
Subject: acknowledgement of Notice of Privacy Practices (NPP)

> On April 15, 2003, we are anticipating that we simply do not have 
> the staff available to supply all patients that walk in our door 
> with our NPP.  It's hard to find someone to do a job like this for 
> only 3-4 months!  We plan to hire college students to accomplish 
> this task when school let outs in May.  
> 
> Nevertheless, in order to be compliant with the April 15, 2003 
> deadline, is it acceptable to mail out our NPP to scheduled patients 
> ahead of time?  
> 
> Is the fact that we are mailing them out  (and let's say we can keep 
> track of who got SENT one) sufficient in itself to meet the 
> requirement of a "Good faith effort to obtain acknowledgement of 
> receipt of NPP"?  That is, is simply mailing out the NPP adequate?   
> If such a plan is not adequate, what about if we included an 
> acknowledgement form in the mailing and asked the patient to return 
> the form (and we did NOT supply an envelop or stamp)?  Would that be 
> enough, even if no one returns it? 
> 
> Thanks.
> Rich Fairley MD
> Dubuque, IA 
> 
> ---
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The WEDI SNIP listserv to which you are subscribed is not moderated. The discussions 
on this listserv therefore represent the views of the individual participants, and do 
not necessarily represent the views of the WEDI Board of Directors nor WEDI SNIP. If 
you wish to receive an official opinion, post your question to the WEDI SNIP Issues 
Database at http://snip.wedi.org/tracking/.   These listservs should not be used for 
commercial marketing purposes or discussion of specific vendor products and services.  
They also are not intended to be used as a forum for personal disagreements or 
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