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Am I Guaranteed Confidentiality during Addiction Treatment?

Am I Guaranteed Confidentiality during Addiction Treatment?Among the many factors to consider while choosing a substance abuse treatment program, confidentiality is often a major concern of patients and their families in Albuquerque. Addiction presents a great enough emotional struggle without having to worry about the judgment of others, professional repercussions, or the invasion of privacy. Treatment professionals are well aware of this fear and many programs follow a strict set of guidelines that help protect their patients’ privacy so that they can get the most from the treatment experience.

What Rules Protect Privacy, Identity and Personal Information during Treatment?

Trust is an essential element of addiction recovery. Patients must feel comfortable enough to confide in treatment professionals and be honest with themselves. If they fear that their trust will be breached, they are less likely to open up and make progress during treatment.

Thankfully, certain government-enforced guidelines concerning privacy ensure that treatment professionals are held accountable for what they share and do not share. Treatment centers must adhere to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) Privacy and Security Rules. These rules attempt to balance the sharing of information for proper care of a patient and respecting a patient’s privacy. These rules attempt to accomplish the following goals:

  • Protect information that could be reasonably used to identify a patient who has been given a diagnosis or received treatment for a substance abuse disorder
  • Protect information that could be reasonably used to identify a former or deceased patient
  • Permit disclosure only for “treatment, payment, and health care operations”
  • Permit disclosure only with patient consent in writing and only in agreement with the specifications
  • Protect information regarding the individual’s past, present, or future physical or mental health or condition
  • Protect information regarding the provision of health care to the individual
  • Protect information regarding the past, present, or future payment for the provision of health care to the individual
  • Avoid restriction of information that has been de-identified
  • Allow only the “minimum necessary” disclosure
  • Enforce accountability for not adhering to privacy and confidentiality rules

These privacy rules are in place so that Albuquerque residents can receive the best treatment possible without fearing for their privacy. The authorized sharing of information is used for the benefit of the health community to better the experiences of others struggling with substance abuse.

Help for Addiction

If you or a loved one in Albuquerque is struggling with substance abuse and addiction, call our toll-free helpline to speak to an admission coordinator about finding confidential and effective treatment. We are available 24 hours a day to help you overcome your addiction and achieve long-term recovery. Please call today.