Privacy Notice:   National Hearing Centers, 832 Main St, Ste 101, Kerrville, TX 78028                Eff: 04/24/06


You have the right to the confidentiality of your medical information and the right to approve or refuse the release of specific information except when the release is required by law. If the practices described in this notice meet your expectations, there is nothing you need to do. If you prefer that we do not share this information, we may honor your written request.

Our Pledge Regarding Medical Information:

We understand that medical information about you and your health is personal. We are committed to protecting the confidentiality of your medical information. As part of our routine operations, we create a record of the care and services you receive. We need this record to provide you with quality care and to comply with certain legal requirements. This notice applies to all of the records of your care generated by National Hearing Centers.

How We May use And Disclose Medical Information about You                                                                                                        

  For Treatment: 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, medical students, or other facility personnel who are involved in taking care of you at the facility.

  For Payment:  We may use and disclose medical information about you so that treatment and services you receive at the facility may be billed to you and payment may be collected from you, an insurance company, or a third party.

   For Health Care Operations:  We may use and disclose medical information about you for facility operations. These uses and disclosures are necessary to run the facility and assure that all of our patients receive quality care.

    As Require by Law: We will disclose medical information about you when required to do so by federal, state, or local law.

    To Avert a Serious Health Threat to Health or Safety

    To Notify 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.

    Health Oversight Activities: We may disclose medical information to a health oversight agency for activities required by law. These oversight activities include, for example, audits, investigations, and licensure. These activities are necessary to for the government to monitor the health care system, government programs, and compliance with civil rights laws.

    Law Suits and Disputes: If you are involved in a law suit or dispute, we may 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 or to obtain an order protecting the information requested.

Your Rights Regarding Medical Information Regarding 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. To inspect and copy this information, you must submit in writing to the corporate office. We will have 30 days to respond to your request. We charge a fee for the costs of copying, mailing or other supplies associated with your request.

    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 for as long as the information is kept at the facility. To request an amendment you must submit such, in writing to our corporate office. We will have 30 days to respond to your request. In addition, you must provide a reason that supports your request. We may deny your request if it is not in writing or does not include a reason to support the request.

    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. To request this list, you must submit  your request in writing to the corporate office. We will have 30 days to respond to your request.  Your request must state a time period that may not be longer than six years and may not include dates before Feb 26, 2003. This first list you request within a 12 month period will be free. For additional lists, we charge you for the costs of providing the list. We will notify you of the cost involved and you may choose to withdraw or modify your request before any costs are incurred.

Right to Request Restrictions:  You have the right to request a restriction of limitation on the medical information we use or disclose about you to family members or friends. To request restrictions you must submit a request in writing to the corporate office. 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.

 Right to request Confidential Communications: You have the right to request that we communicate with you in a certain way or location. For example only at work or by mail. You must make this request in writing to the corporate office. We will not ask you the reason for your request. We will accommodate all reasonable requests.

Changes to This Notice: We reserve the right to change this notice. We will post a copy of the current notice in the facility. The notice will have an effective date in the top right hand corner. Each time you register at our facility you may request a current copy.

Complaints: If you believe your privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with National Hearing Centers or with the Secretary of the Dept of Health and Human Services.. To file a complaint contact National Hearing Centers. All complaints must be filed 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 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, we will no longer use or disclose medical information about you for the reason covered by your written authorization. You understand that we are unable to take back any disclosures already made with your permission, and that we are required to retain our records of the care that we provided to you.