According to the state laws of New Jersey, reporting of an alleged abuse is mandatory (Medical Records Laws – Information about the Law on Medical Records, 2008, n. p. ). Admission/confession to state officials for child abuse is obligatory in New Jersey (Medical Records Laws – Information about the Law on Medical Records, 2008, n. p. ).
The federal law also requires that alleged abuse cases be reported (National Guideline Clearinghouse, 2008, n. p. ).In fact, it is said that “the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) does not preempt state laws that provide for reporting or investigating child abuse” (National Guideline Clearinghouse, 2008, n. p.
). Who are mandated reporters and what is their legal obligation? In New Jersey, the mandated reporters include “persons having reasonable cause to believe that a child has been subjected to abuse or acts of abuse” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n.p. ).
Meanwhile, the aforementioned mandated reporters are obliged to report “acts of abuse” to the “State Central Registry” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n. p. ). However, ff the patient is “in immediate danger”, then the mandated reporters should contact “911”, as well as, “1-877 NJ ABUSE” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n. p.
).Furthermore, mandated reporters are obliged to disclose information with regards to the following: 1) the name of the parents/guardians of the child, the age of the person responsible for the abuse, the address of the person behind the alleged crime, the name of the perpetrator, as well as, the relationship of the aforementioned to the child who has been allegedly abused; 2) the kind of abuse that occurred, the number of times it occurred, “the current or previous injuries to the child and what caused the mandated reporter to become concerned”’; 3) when the alleged abuse actually happened and when the mandated reporter discovered it; 4) where the abuse actually happened, where the current location of the alleged victim is, as well as, if the one responsible for the abuse “has access to the child” or not; and last but not least 5) the urgency or need for interference/involvement, as well as, the possibility of “imminent danger for the child” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n. p. ).
In addition to the aforementioned, “failure to report such an alleged abuse may be obliged to pay a fine of $1,000 or imprisonment of up to a maximum of six months or both” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n. p. ). What do you say to Mrs.
Anderson about her access to records? It should be explained to Mrs. Anderson that according to the State Disclosure Laws of New Jersey, “medical records are confidential although it may be disclosed to the patient, upon court order” (Department of Children and Families, 2008, n. p. ). In addition to that, Mrs.Anderson should be told that according to the HIPAA Privacy Rule, “she may not be treated as a personal representative since the health care provider believes, in his or her professional judgment, that her daughter has been subjected to sexual abuse and that treating her as her daughter’s personal representative could endanger the child” (U. S. Department of Health & Human Services, n.
d. , n. p. ). Also, she should be told that medical records may not be altered, information may be added, but not changed nor deleted (U. S. Department of Health & Human Services, n. d.
, n. p. ). What laws regulate the access or disclosure of medical records/information of a minor (receiving reproductive care/treatment)? In New Jersey, there are certain “laws that regulate the access or disclosure of medical records/information of minor receiving reproductive care/treatment” and some of these are the following: 1) 26:4-41 for sexually transmitted diseases; 2) 26:5C-6 for AIDS;3) §30:4-24.3 for other exceptions; 4) §26:4-41 for venereal disease; and last but not least 5) HIPAA does not allow disclosure of information with regards to “reproductive services” to persons except the patient itself (U. S. Department of Health & Human Services, n.
d. , n. p. ).
What practical recommendations do you have to do to avoid similar problems in the future? As an administrator at the General Hospital, I will conduct trainings for my subordinates, as well as, the mandated reporters to become familiar with HIPAA and the New Jersey State Law so that they will know how to address similar situations in the future. References Department of Children and Families. How and When to Report Child Abuse/Neglect.Retrieved February 22, 2008 from http://www.
state. nj. us/dcf/abuse/how/ Medical Records Laws – Information about the Law on Medical Records. (2008). Retrieved February 22, 2008 from http://law.
jrank. org/pages/11849/Medical-Records. html National Guideline Clearinghouse.
(2008). The Evaluation of Sexual Abuse in Children. Retrieved February 22, 2008 from http://www. guideline. gov/summary/summary.
aspx? doc_id=7583 U. S. Department of Health & Human Services. (n. d.. ).
Does the HIPAA Privacy Rule Allow Parents the Right to See their Children’s Medical Records? Retrieved February 22, 2008 from http://www. hhs. gov/hipaafaq/personal/227. html