Idaho Hospitals Implementing New Idaho Patient Rights Rules

Idaho patients enjoy new rights as hospitals execute new laws. The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW) is applying the laws starting July 1, 2019.

IDHW explained that it is the proposal of patient advocacy groups to incorporate criteria that parallel existing regulations and/or Medicare terms of participation for hospitals yet don’t particularly mirror them. The guidelines are in-line with the MyHealthEData plan, which began in 2018 with the objective of removing the problems to accessing electronic medical records.

With the earlier state regulation, it isn’t necessary for critical access hospitals (CAHs) to conform to many regulatory requirements that apply to other healthcare companies. Changes will take effect under the new law as CAHs implement the new policies and procedures. The CAHs have to deal with a substantial administrative load.

The new rules apply to all hospitals found in Idaho and also to any company providing Idaho hospitals with services. IDHW informed all hospitals and service providers to examine their policies and procedures to make sure of compliance with the new regulations.

The new rules are intended to reinforce patient rights and enable patients to conveniently and immediately access copies of their health information and their EHRs.

As required by HIPAA, patients must be provided their healthcare records copy up to 30 days after filing their request. The new regulations now call for securing the patients’ EMRs in 3 days after getting the request. The copy must also be provided in a readable format saved in a portable media storage device.

HIPAA sets a limit on the sum patients have to pay for copies of their health information. The new Idaho rules take care of patients by only permitting hospitals to charge a reasonable fee for labor and duplicating fee at the hospital library.

The new rules protect a patient’s privacy right even more. Patients have the right to privacy when given personal care and constant monitoring with video and audio. From July 1, 2019, hospitals are not allowed to capture a video or audio, other than in common areas, without the patients’ written consent first. The recordings should be kept with patients’ medical records.

The new rules also cover these issues: advance patient care instructions, notices of termination of care, acquisition and recording of informed consent, patient safety, patient problems, restraint and seclusion, and law enforcement limitations.