What is the law in regards to insurance companies releasing medical records without the patient’s consent?

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What is the law in regards to insurance companies releasing medical records without the patient’s consent?

I have been on workers comp since 2004. I was deemed disabled by the judge in 2007. The Insurance company wants me to be rechecked because of the length of time. They automatically sent all of my medical records to the new doctor without my consent. I may have signed one 4 years ago, is this consent good for life or is their a statue of limitations regarding a patient’s consent for release? They are all the records that were obtained since 2004.

Asked on April 11, 2011 under Personal Injury, South Carolina

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

And what you are thinking is that the authorization is "stale" and that you would have needed to execute a new one, correct?  Well, that may be true and it may not be true.  The insurance company that is paying for your benefits has a right to have you evaluated - periodically in fact - as to your disability and how it is progressing.  And they do send the record to the Doctor directly and this is not necessarily a violation of any HIPAA laws, which is where I think that you are going.  If you have a concern then I would speak with the State Department of Insurance and call the company rep directly as well.  Good luck. 


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