April 15, 2021

OCR Proposed Changes to HIPAA Privacy Law

In January 2021, HHS OCR published proposed modifications to the HIPAA Privacy Rule designed to empower individuals, improve coordinated care, and reduce regulatory burdens, and requested public comment on the rule until May 6. The proposed changes to the HIPAA Privacy Rule include strengthening individuals’ rights to access their health information, including electronic information; improving information sharing for care coordination and case management for individuals; facilitating greater family and caregiver involvement in the care of individuals experiencing emergencies or health crises; enhancing flexibilities for disclosures in emergency or threatening circumstances, such as the opioid and COVID-19 public health emergencies; and reducing administrative burdens on HIPAA covered health care providers and health plans, while continuing to protect individuals’ health information privacy interests.