Phenomix Sciences 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.

WHY THIS APPLIES

Phenomix Sciences operates a laboratory located at 1000 Westgate Drive, St Paul, MN 55114 and is thus considered a Covered Entity under the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act governing the use and disclosure of patient health information.

PHENOMIX SCIENCES’ DUTIES

By law, Phenomix Sciences must keep protected health information private. The federal government defines protected health information as any information, whether oral, electronic or paper, which is created or received by Phenomix Sciences and relates to a patient’s physical or mental health or condition, or payment for the provision of medical services. This includes not only the results of tests and notes written by doctors, nurses and other clinical personnel, but also certain demographic information (such as your name, address and telephone number) that is related to your health records.

Phenomix Sciences is required by law to give you this notice and to follow the terms and conditions of the notice that is currently in effect. Phenomix Sciences will report breaches of your unsecured protected health information as required by law.

HOW PHENOMIX SCIENCES FULFILLS THESE DUTIES

THE HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS COVERED BY THIS NOTICE

This notice covers Phenomix Sciences and Phenomix Sciences personnel, volunteers, students, and trainees.

A WORD ABOUT FEDERAL AND STATE LAW

Federal and state laws require Phenomix Sciences to protect your medical information and federal law requires Phenomix Sciences to describe to you how we handle that information. When federal and state privacy laws differ, and the state law is more protective of your information or provides you with greater access to your information, then state law will override federal law. For example, where we have specifically identified additional applicable state law requirements in this notice, Phenomix Sciences will follow the more stringent state law requirements.

PART I - MOST COMMON USES AND DISCLOSURES

This section describes the most common circumstances in which Phenomix Sciences may use or disclose protected health information without your prior authorization.

TREATMENT

Phenomix Sciences will use and disclose protected health information to provide, coordinate or manage your care. This includes, for example, communication and consultation between Phenomix Sciences and health care providers - doctors, nurses, technicians and other members of your medical team. This applies to disclosures for treatment purposes to health care providers both within and outside of Phenomix Sciences.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements
Minnesota Law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of protected health information by Phenomix Sciences in Minnesota for treatment purposes, unless consent is not possible due to a medical emergency.

PAYMENT

Phenomix Sciences will use and disclose protected health information to create bills and collect payment from insurance companies, Medicare and other payers. This may include, for example, providing information such as dates of service, symptoms, and diagnosis to your insurance company to show that Phenomix Sciences provided health care services to you. Phenomix Sciences also may disclose protected health information to another health care provider if such information is needed by the other health care provider to obtain payment for medical services provided to you.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements
Minnesota Law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of protected health information by Phenomix Sciences in Minnesota for payment purposes.

HEALTH CARE OPERATIONS

Phenomix Sciences will use and disclose protected health information if it is necessary to improve the quality of care we provide to patients or to run our health care facilities. These include, for example, activities to monitor and improve patient care, license staff to care for patients, prepare for state and federal regulatory reviews, train health care and non-health care professionals, manage health care operations, and improve health care services.

Phenomix Sciences may also disclose protected health information to another health care provider who has treated you, or to your insurance company, if such information is needed for certain health care operations of the health care provider or insurance company, such as quality improvement activities, evaluations of health care professionals, and state and federal regulatory reviews.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements
Minnesota Law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of protected health information by Phenomix Sciences for health care operations purposes.

PATIENT CONTACTS

At times, Phenomix Sciences may access information, such as your name, address and general medical condition to contact you to:

MEDICAL RESEARCH

Medical research is vital to the advancement of medical science. Federal regulations permit use of protected health information in medical research, either with your authorization, when your name and most other identifiers have been removed and the recipient of the information signs a data use agreement, or when the research study is reviewed and approved by an Institutional Review Board before any medical research study begins. In some situations, limited information may be used before approval of the research study to allow a researcher to determine whether enough patients exist to make a study scientifically valid.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements

Minnesota Law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of protected health information by Phenomix Sciences to outside researchers for medical research purposes. Phenomix Sciences will obtain such consent from their patients or refusal to participate in any research study, or will make a good faith effort to obtain such consent or refusal, before releasing any identifiable information to an outside researcher for research purposes.

PART II OTHER POTENTIAL USES AND DISCLOSURES

This section describes the less common circumstances in which Phenomix Sciences may use or disclose your protected health information.

HEALTH OVERSIGHT ACTIVITIES

Phenomix Sciences may disclose protected health information to health oversight agencies that oversee our operations or personnel. These agencies need such information to monitor our compliance with state and federal laws.

LAWSUITS AND OTHER JUDICIAL PROCEEDINGS

Phenomix Sciences may disclose protected health information in response to a valid court or administrative order. Phenomix Sciences also may disclose protected health information in response to certain types of subpoenas, discovery requests or other lawful process.

LAW ENFORCEMENT ACTIVITIES

Phenomix Sciences may disclose protected health information to law enforcement officials. For example, we may release protected health information to law enforcement officials in response to a valid court order, grand jury subpoena, or search warrant.

Additional Applicable State Law Requirements
Minnesota Law generally requires patient consent for disclosures of protected health information by Phenomix Sciences for law enforcement purposes, unless the disclosure is in response to a valid court order or warrant.

REQUIRED BY LAW

Phenomix Sciences may use or disclose protected health information when otherwise required by federal, state, or local laws.

PERMITTED BY LAW

Phenomix Sciences may use or disclose protected health information when permitted by federal, state, or local laws.

USES AND DISCLOSURES WHEN YOUR AUTHORIZATION IS REQUIRED

Except as described in this notice or specifically required or permitted by law, Phenomix Sciences will not use or disclose your protected health information without your specific written authorization. At times, Phenomix Sciences may ask you to provide specific written permission to allow Phenomix Sciences to use or disclose protected health information about you. Phenomix Sciences generally will not use or disclose your protected health information for marketing purposes, in exchange for remuneration, unless Phenomix Sciences receives your express authorization to do so. You may revoke a valid authorization in writing at any time. Written revocation of authorization must be submitted to the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer at the address below. Once the authorization is revoked, the Phenomix Sciences will no longer be allowed to use or disclose protected health information for the purposes described in the authorization except to the extent Phenomix Sciences has already taken action based upon the authorization.

INFORMATION WITH ADDITIONAL PROTECTIONS

Certain types of protected health information may have additional protection under federal or state law. For example, protected health information about mental health, HIV/AIDS and genetic testing results is treated differently than other types of protected health information under certain state laws. To the extent applicable, Phenomix Sciences would need to get your written permission before disclosing that information to others in many circumstances.


PART III PATIENTS’ RIGHTS WITH RESPECT TO PROTECTED HEALTH INFORMATION

This section describes the rights of Phenomix Sciences patients regarding their protected health information.

RIGHT TO INSPECT AND COPY

You have the right to inspect and to request a copy of information maintained in Phenomix Sciences’ designated record set about you.

To obtain or inspect a copy of your protected health information, submit a written request to Phenomix Sciences and address the request to the attention of the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer at the address below. Phenomix Sciences generally may charge a reasonable, cost-based fee to cover the expense of providing copies.

Most patients have full access to inspect and receive a copy of the full medical record. On rare occasions, Phenomix Sciences may deny a request to inspect and receive a copy of some information in the medical record. For example, this may occur if, in the professional judgment of a patient’s physician, the release of the information would be reasonably likely to endanger the life or physical safety of the patient or another person.

RIGHT TO REQUEST ALTERNATE METHODS OF COMMUNICATION

You have a right to request that Phenomix Sciences communicate with you in certain ways (such as a letter or by phone) or at a certain location. For example, you may ask that we contact you only at home or only at your place of business. In this situation, you may submit a written request to Phenomix Sciences specifying the communication method or alternative location being requested. The request should be addressed to the attention of the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer at the address below. Phenomix Sciences will accommodate reasonable requests.

RIGHT TO REQUEST AMENDMENT

You have the right to request that your protected health information in Phenomix Sciences designated medical record for you be amended. If you wish to request amendment of the information in your record, submit a written request to the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer at the address below. The request must include a reason to support the amendment.
Phenomix Sciences may deny a request for amendment based upon any of the following circumstances:

If Phenomix Sciences denies your request for an amendment, Phenomix Sciences will give you a written explanation of the denial. If you still disagree with the explanation provided, you can submit your written disagreement to Phenomix Sciences as referenced above, or you can ask that your request for amendment and explanation of the denial, or an accurate summary of such information, be included in any future disclosure of the pertinent protected health information. If you submit a statement of disagreement, Phenomix Sciences may include a rebuttal statement addressing your statement of disagreement in the designated medical record.

RIGHT TO A LIST OF CERTAIN DISCLOSURES

You can ask Phenomix Sciences for a list of the persons or organizations to which Phenomix Sciences has disclosed your protected health information. This list would provide you with a summary of certain disclosures Phenomix Sciences has made that you would not otherwise be in a position to know about. The following are examples of disclosures that would not be included in the list:

To obtain a copy of the list, submit a written request to Phenomix Sciences and address the request to the attention of the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer. Your request must state a time period. The first list requested within a 12-month period shall be provided at no charge. For additional lists requested during the same 12-month period, Phenomix Sciences may charge for the costs of providing the list.

RIGHT TO REQUEST RESTRICTIONS

You can ask Phenomix Sciences to restrict the use or disclosure of protected health information about you for treatment, payment, or health care operations. Your request must be in writing and submitted to Phenomix Sciences. The request should also be addressed to the attention of the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer. Phenomix Sciences is not obligated to agree to all such requests but will carefully consider all requests.

RIGHT TO NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES

You have the right to obtain a paper copy of this notice upon request, even if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically. To obtain a paper copy of this notice, submit a written request to Phenomix Sciences. The request should be addressed to the attention of the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer.

NOTICES AND COMPLAINTS

If you want to file a complaint or express concerns about Phenomix Sciences’ use or disclosure of Protected Health Information, or to request additional information about our privacy practices, please contact the Phenomix Sciences Privacy Officer at the address below as follows:

Phenomix Sciences Laboratory and Headquarters:
1000 Westgate Drive

St. Paul, MN 55114
Phone: 1-877-673-0981

Attn: Chief Privacy Officer

You also may file a written complaint with the United States Department of Health and Human Services – Office for Civil Rights. Phenomix Sciences honors your right to express concerns regarding your privacy. Phenomix Sciences would not – nor could it legally or ethically – take action against you for filing a concern or complaint regarding the use, disclosure, and rights of your protected health information.

KEY INFORMATION ABOUT THIS NOTICE