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HIPAA Rules and Disclosures During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced that it will exercise its enforcement discretion and will waive potential penalties for HIPAA violations against healthcare providers that serve patients through remote communications technologies, such as FaceTime, Zoom, and Skype, during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency. The OCR also recently announced that it will exercise its enforcement discretion and will not impose penalties for violations of certain provisions of the HIPAA Privacy Rule against healthcare providers or their business associates for the “good faith” uses and disclosures of protected health information (PHI) by business associates for public health and health oversight activities during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency.

Click here for a more detailed summary of OCR’s response to the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency.