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Privacy Practices of TruCircle

This notice descrives how individually identifiable health information may be used and disclosed by BC53, LLC d/b/a TruCircle, and how it may be accessed by users who use the TruCircle platform.

I. Purpose of This Notice of Privacy Practices

This Notice describes the health information privacy practices of BC53, LLC D/B/A TruCircle.  Any user of the TruCircle Platform, Applications, Content and Links (the “TruCircle Platform”), should note that TruCircle is not a licensed health care provider or a health plan.  Rather, TruCircle provides its Platform on behalf of individuals (each a “User”), in some cases as a business associate, under the applicable provisions of the Laws.

II. TruCircle’s Privacy Obligations

Under the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health chapter of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (HITECH) and the implementing regulations and other applicable state and federal laws (Collectively, the “Laws”), TruCircle may be required by law to maintain the privacy of the protected  health information (“Protected Health Information” or “PHI”) of its Users and to provide each such User with this Notice of Privacy Practices regarding Protected Health Information. TruCircle may be a business associate, as defined in those Laws, depending upon the nature of the User and User’s relationship with a health care payer or provider. When TruCircle uses or discloses Protected Health Information, it may be required to abide by the terms of its privacy policies as reflected in this Notice as it may be amended or updated from time to time.

The Laws divide uses and disclosures of PHI into those which can be done without individual authorization and those which require individual authorization.  Section III describes uses and disclosures that can be done without individual authorization.  Section IV describes uses and disclosures that can be made only with written Individual authorization. 

III. Permissible Uses and Disclosures Without A Written Authorization

A.     Uses and Disclosures For Treatment, Payment and Health Care Operations. TruCircle may use and disclose PHI under federal law in order to enable treatment, receive payment or engage in healthcare operations as described below:

Treatment.  Pursuant to and consistent with an arrangement among a User and provider or health plan, TruCircle may use and disclose PHI to those who provide diagnosis and treatment to a User. 

Payment. TruCircle may use and disclose PHI to obtain payment for services that TruCircle provides. TruCircle may also disclose PHI to a provider or health care facility when such PHI is required for such a provider or health care facility to engage in treatment, payment or health care operations. HITECH provides, however, that a User may pay for the services and request that his/her PHI not be disclosed to the health plan for that service.

Health Care Operations. TruCircle  may use and disclose PHI for health care operations, which include administration, management and activities that improve the quality and cost effectiveness of the TruCircle Platform. 

B.     Disclosure to Relatives, Close Friends and Other Caregivers. TruCircle may use or disclose PHI to a User’s family member, other relative, a close personal friend or any other person identified by a User with a written authorization received from the User prior to  the disclosure.

            If a User has not provided a written authorization and such authorization cannot practicably be provided because of incapacity or an emergency circumstance, TruCircle personnel may exercise professional judgment to determine whether a disclosure is in the best interest of the User.  If TruCircle discloses information to a provider, payer, family member, other relative or a close personal friend without an authorization, TruCircle would disclose only the minimum necessary information that TruCircle determines to be necessary for the purpose of the disclosure. TruCircle may also disclose PHI in order to notify (or assist in notifying) such persons of a User’s location, general condition or death.

C.     Public Health Activities. TruCircle may disclose PHI in order to comply with public health requirements, including but not limited to:  (1) to report certain diseases, conditions or other findings to public health authorities for the purpose of preventing or controlling disease, injury or disability; (2) to report child abuse and neglect to public health authorities or other government authorities authorized by law to receive such reports; (3) to report information about products and services under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; (4) to alert a person who may have been exposed to a communicable disease or may otherwise be at risk of contracting or spreading a disease or condition (under specifically limited circumstances); and (5) to report suspected abuse or neglect to a governmental authority, including a social service or protective services agency, authorized by law to receive reports of such abuse or neglect.

D.     Health Oversight Activities. TruCircle may disclose PHI to a health oversight agency that oversees the health care system and is charged with responsibility for ensuring compliance with the rules of government health programs such as Medicare or Medicaid and civil rights laws.

E.      Judicial and Administrative Proceedings. TruCircle may disclose PHI in the course of a judicial or administrative proceeding in response to a legal order or other lawful process.

F.      Law Enforcement Officials. TruCircle may disclose PHI to the police or other law enforcement officials as required or permitted by law or in compliance with a court order or a grand jury or administrative subpoena.

G.     Uses or Disclosures Required By Law. TruCircle may use and disclose PHI when required to do so by any other law not already referred to in the preceding categories.

IV. Uses and Disclosures Requiring Written Authorization

This Section IV describes the circumstances pursuant to which TruCircle must obtain an individual’s written authorization to use or disclose PHI

TruCircle only may use or disclose PHI when it receives a written authorization for such use or disclosure for any purpose other than the ones described above in Section III, and as described below. 

A.     HIV/AIDS Related Information. TruCircle shall only disclose PHI related to HIV or AIDs with the express authorization of the Individual, and for those reasons listed above. 

B.     Behavioral Health Information. Consistent with State and Federal laws, TruCircle will only disclose Behavioral Health Information pursuant to a valid written authorization.  The confidentiality of alcohol and drug abuse User records maintained by TruCircle is protected by federal and state law and regulations. TruCircle may not disclose drug and alcohol medical records without a User’s written authorization.

V. Rights Regarding Protected Health Information

A.     For Further Information; Complaints. Further information, concerns or complaints about TruCircle’s privacy practices, or about any violations of User privacy rights or disagreements with a decision that TruCircle made regarding access to PHI, should be addressed to the TruCircle Privacy Office, at the following address:

support@mytrucircle.com

A User may also file written complaints with the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, at the following address:

Office for Civil Rights
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
601 East 12th Street - Room 353
Kansas City, MO 64106
Voice Phone (800) 368-1019
FAX (816) 426-3686
TDD (800) 537-7697

TruCircle will not retaliate against any person who reports a privacy issue or files a complaint with the Director of OCR/HHS or with the Privacy Officer.

B.     Right to Request Restrictions. A User may request restrictions on TruCircle’s use and disclosure of PHI (1) for treatment, payment and health care operations, (2) to individuals (such as a provider, family member, other relative, close personal friend or any other person identified by the User) involved with care or with payment related to care, or (3) to prevent or limit the notification of such individuals regarding a User’s location and general condition.   

C.     Right to Receive Confidential Communications. A User may request, and TruCircle will accommodate, any reasonable written request to receive his or her PHI by alternative means of communication or at alternative locations. Requests should be made to the Privacy Office in writing.

D.     Right to Revoke Authorization. A User may revoke his or her Authorization, except to the extent that TruCircle have taken action in reliance upon it, by delivering a written revocation statement to the Privacy Office identified above.

E.     Right to Inspect and Copy Health Information. TruCircle does not retain or store PHI.  To the extent that TruCircle has PHI, a User may request access to medical record files and billing records maintained by TruCircle in order to inspect and request copies of the records.  Under limited circumstances, TruCircle may deny access to a portion of such records.  Record requests must be made in writing to the Privacy Office. TruCircle  will charge $1.00 per page, for the first 100 pages, and $0.25 per page after that, up to a maximum of $200.00 per record, plus postage costs if mailing is requested.

F.     Right to Amend Records. To the extent that TruCircle stores PHI, each User has the right to request that TruCircle amend Protected Health Information maintained in TruCircle’s medical record file or billing records, by making such a request in writing to the Privacy Office. TruCircle will comply with such requests unless TruCircle believes that the amendment is inaccurate or would result in an inaccurate or incomplete record.

G.     Right to Receive An Accounting of Disclosures. Upon written request to the Privacy Office, TruCircle will provide a User with an accounting of certain disclosures of PHI made by TruCircle during any period of time prior to the date of said request to the Effective Date, provided such period does not exceed six years.  

H.     Right to Receive Paper Copy of this Notice. Upon request, TruCircle will provide a paper copy of this Notice.

 

VI. Effective Date and Duration of This Notice

A.      Effective Date. This Notice is effective on registration date.

 B.     Right to Change Terms of this Notice. TruCircle may change the terms of this Notice at any time.  If TruCircle changes this Notice, TruCircle may make the new notice terms effective for all Protected Health Information that TruCircle maintain, including any information created or received prior to issuing the new notice.  Copies of any amended notice will be available from the Privacy Office.

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