Personal Statement & Work and Activities - HIPAA

DaOddOne

Full Member
2+ Year Member
Aug 15, 2019
57
6
86
  1. Pre-Medical
Hello all,

In my personal statement I discussed the story of a resident that I met while volunteering at a nursing home. I discussed her medical condition, but did not mention her name. In my work and activities, I provided the specific name of the nursing home that I volunteered at. If an individual reads my whole application, would this combined information constitute a HIPAA violation?

Thank you in advance.
 

LizzyM

the evil queen of numbers
15+ Year Member
Mar 7, 2005
25,683
44,043
326
  1. Academic Administration
It might. It is best to use caution and use a pseudonym. You can say "Ms. B." or "Ada" (use a short pseudonym to save space) and put the name in quotes or add parenthetically that this is a pseudonym.

I've often told the story of a fellow member of the adcom who read an application similar to yours and recognized that a disabled child mentioned by first name at a school where the applicant had volunteered was her own son! What the applicant did not know was that the youngster had recently died. The adcom member recused herself but it made me aware of just what a small world it is.
 
  • Like
  • Sad
Reactions: 1 users

DaOddOne

Full Member
2+ Year Member
Aug 15, 2019
57
6
86
  1. Pre-Medical
It might. It is best to use caution and use a pseudonym. You can say "Ms. B." or "Ada" (use a short pseudonym to save space) and put the name in quotes or add parenthetically that this is a pseudonym.

I've often told the story of a fellow member of the adcom who read an application similar to yours and recognized that a disabled child mentioned by first name at a school where the applicant had volunteered was her own son! What the applicant did not know was that the youngster had recently died. The adcom member recused herself but it made me aware of just what a small world it is.

If I refer to her as "she", "her", or "a/the resident", would I be okay? I've never mentioned her name.
 
About the Ads

lumya

Indoor Cat
2+ Year Member
Aug 7, 2018
702
1,382
126
  1. Medical Student
No this would likely not be a HIPAA violation. I’m assuming when you say “discussed” her condition you mean general and not specifics. Saying you met a resident with, say dementia, at a nursing facility does not provide any identifying characteristics but if you went further and said you met a patient with dementia and skin cancer who was a nurse during the Vietnam war and her three kids don’t visit her then you have provide enough information for someone to recognize who you’re talking about.
 
  • Like
Reactions: 1 users
About the Ads
This thread is more than 1 year old.

Your message may be considered spam for the following reasons:

  1. Your new thread title is very short, and likely is unhelpful.
  2. Your reply is very short and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  3. Your reply is very long and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  4. It is very likely that it does not need any further discussion and thus bumping it serves no purpose.
  5. Your message is mostly quotes or spoilers.
  6. Your reply has occurred very quickly after a previous reply and likely does not add anything to the thread.
  7. This thread is locked.