HIPAA and Psychoanalytic Practice

HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) Federal privacy standards for health care patient information went into effect on April 14, 2003. These standards created new procedures for protecting electronically-transmitted patient information, with special protections for Psychotherapy Notes. While these standards may in superficial ways change how analysts disclose patient information, HIPAA has also caused heightened attention to how psychoanalysts have handled protection of patient material. For instance, should the analyst publish or present patient material, even disguised, without seeking patient consent before publishing or presenting, and risk upsetting the patient? Can the analyst comply with state and Federal disclosure requirements regarding potential harm to self or others without causing harm to the patient? What factors does the analyst consider to make decisions in these areas? This 2004 article considers the ways analytic thought has addressed these questions and how HIPAA may influence the variety of conclusions that have been reached.
HIPAA and Psychoanalytic Practice
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