Privacy Notice

Women’s Clinic of South Texas Web Site Disclaimer Statement

Please remember that medical information provided by the Women’s Clinic of South Texas, in the absence of a visit with a health care professional, must be considered as an educational service only. The information sent through e-mail should not be relied upon as a medical consultation. This mechanism is not designed to replace a physician’s independent judgement about the appropriateness or risks of a procedure for a given patient. We will do our best to provide you with information that will help you make your own health care decisions.

This notice describes how medical information about you may be used and disclosed, and how you can get access to this information. Please review it carefully.

The Women’s Clinic of South Texas respects your privacy. We understand that your personal health information is very sensitive. We will not disclose your information to others unless you tell us to do so, or unless we are required by law to do so.

The law protects the privacy of the health information we create and obtain in providing health care and services to you. Your protected health information includes your symptoms, lab test results, diagnoses, treatment, health information from other providers, and billing and payment information relating to these services. Federal and state law allows us to use and disclose your protected health information for purposes of treatment and health care operations. State law requires us to get your authorization to disclose this information for payment purposes.

Examples of Use and Disclosure of Protected Health Information for Treatment, Payment and Health Operations:

For Treatment:

  • Information obtained by a nurse, physician or other member of our health care team will be recorded in your medical record and used to help decide what care may be right for you.
  • We may also provide information to others providing you care. This will help them stay informed about your care.

For Payment:

  • We request payment from your health insurance plan. Health plans need information from us about your medical care. Information provided to health plans may include your diagnoses, procedures performed, or recommended care.

For Health Care Operations:

  • We use your medical records to assess quality and improve services.
  • We may use and disclose medical records to review the qualifications and performance of our health care providers and to train our staff.
  • We may contact you to remind you about appointments and give you information about treatment alternatives or other health-related benefits and services.
  • We may use and disclose your information to conduct or arrange for services, including: medical quality review by your health plan; accounting, legal, risk management, and insurance services; audit functions, including fraud and abuse detection and compliance programs.

Your Health Information Rights

The health and billing records we create and store are the property of The Women’s Clinic of South Texas. The protected health information in it, however, generally belongs to you. You have a right to:

  • Receive, read, and ask questions about this notice.
  • Ask us to restrict certain uses and disclosures. You must deliver this request in writing to us. We are not required to grant the request, but we will comply with any request granted.
  • Request and receive from us a paper copy of the most current Notice of Privacy Practices for Health Information.
  • Request that you be allowed to see and get a copy of your protected health information. You may make this request in writing.
  • Have us review a denial of access to your health information, except in certain circumstances.
  • Ask us to change your health information. You may give us this request in writing. You may write a statement of disagreement if your request is denied. It will be stored in your medical record, and included with any release of your records.
  • When you request, we will give you a list of disclosures of your health information. The list will not include disclosures to third-party payers. You may receive this information without charge once every 12 months. We will notify you of the cost involved if you request this information more than once in 12 months.
  • Ask that your health information be given to you by another means or at another location. Please sign, date, and give us your request in writing.
  • Cancel prior authorizations to use or disclose health information by giving us a written revocation. Your revocation does not affect information that has already been released. It also does not affect any action taken before we have it. Sometimes, you cannot cancel an authorization if its purpose was to obtain insurance.

If you have questions or need assistance with these rights, please contact Ada X. Gonzalez during normal business hours at 956-380-3441.

We are required to:

  • Keep your health information private.
  • Give you this notice.
  • Follow the terms of this notice.

We have the right to change our practices regarding the protected health information we maintain. If we make changes, we will update this notice. You may receive the most current copy of this notice by calling to ask for it, or by coming to our office for a copy.

To Ask for Help or Complain

If you have questions, want more information, or need to report a problem about the handling of your protected health information, please contact Dina Aguilar during normal business hours at 956-380-3441.

Other Disclosures and Use of Protected Health Information

Notification of Family and Others

  • Unless you object, we may release health information about you to a friend or family member who is involved in your medical care. We may also give information to someone who helps pay for your care. We may tell your family or friends your condition and that you are in a hospital. In addition, we may disclose health information about you to assist in disaster relief efforts.
  • [Hospitals] Information may be provided to people who ask for you by name. We may use and disclose the following information in a hospital directory: your name, location, general condition and religion (only to clergy). You have the right to object to this use or disclosure of your information. If you object, we will not use or disclose it.

We may use and disclose your protected health information without your authorization as follows:

  • With medical researchers – if the research has been approved and has policies to protect the privacy of your health information. We may also share information with medical researchers preparing to conduct a research project.
  • To funeral directors/coroners consistent with applicable law to allow them to carry out their duties.
  • To organ procurement organizations (tissue donation and transplant) or persons who obtain, store, or transplant organs.
  • To the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) relating to problems with food, supplements and products.
  • To comply with Workers’ Compensation laws if you make a workers’ compensation claim.
  • For public health and safety purposes as allowed or required by law:
    • To prevent or reduce a serious, immediate threat to the health or safety of a person or the public
    • To public health or legal authorities
    • To protect public health and safety
    • To prevent or control disease, injury or disability
    • To report vital statistics such as births or deaths
    • To report suspected abuse or neglect to public authorities
    • To correctional institutions if you are in jail or prison, as necessary for your health and the health and safety of others
    • For law enforcement purposes, such as when we receive a subpoena, court order or other legal process, or you are the victim of a crime
    • For health and safety oversight activities
    • For disaster relief purposes
    • For work-related conditions that could affect employee health
    • To the military authorities of U.S. and Foreign military personnel
    • In the course of judicial or administrative proceedings at your request, or as directed by a subpoena or court order
    • For specialized government functions, such as national security purposes

Other Uses and Disclosures of Protected Health Information

Uses and disclosures not included in this notice will be made only as allowed or required by law or with your written authorization.