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Patient scans & HIPAA

Discussion in 'Radiology' started by 90oPulse, Nov 11, 2005.

  1. 90oPulse

    90oPulse Junior Member
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    Are patient scans protected under HIPAA and if so, to what extent?

    Can images (such as CXR or MRI of the head/neck) of patients be used without their consent for use in articles or books as long as no identifying information is included?
     
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  3. Docxter

    Docxter Senior Member
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    If no identifying information is included, they are by definition not HIPAA protected health information. That said, there are limitations on initially getting the original "non-anonymized" patient information for research or educational purposes and then anonymizing them. Usually you would need an IRB approval to access the info for research or educational purposes. Some IRB committees may waive the need for informed consent for retrospective studies.
     
  4. 90oPulse

    90oPulse Junior Member
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    How about in this case (purely hypothetical). You mentioned in an earlier post that your hospital had a frequent flier who would come to the ED with various sex toys lodged in her vagina. If this scan shows up on your workstation for you to read, could you just remove the identifying information and use it for an article or a book?

    In this case I would imagine IRB wouldn't apply since you already have access to the study because you were assigned to do the read. HIPAA wouldn't apply because you wouldn't include the patient's name. So would it be acceptable to export such images from the PACS workstation for your own scholarly use?
     

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