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How can I get medical records when the doctor refuses to release them?

Chattanooga, TN |
Filed under: Civil rights

My mother in law took my 3 year old daughter to a psychiatrist without my knowledge. I have asked this doctor for the records and she refuses to release them to me. What can I do and can I report her to the medical board?

Attorney Answers 1

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Under HIPAA, the Health Insurance Privacy and Portability Act, doctors are required to allow you access to your medical records and the medical records of your children. Unless your parental rights have been terminated by a court of law, you have a definite right to all medical records for your child. Below are some of the rights under HIPAA:

Health Insurers and Providers who are covered entities must comply with your right to:

Ask to see and get a copy of your health records
Have corrections added to your health information
Receive a notice that tells you how your health information may be used and shared
Decide if you want to give your permission before your health information can be used or shared for certain purposes, such as for marketing
Get a report on when and why your health information was shared for certain purposes
If you believe your rights are being denied or your health information isn’t being protected, you can
File a complaint with your provider or health insurer
File a complaint with the U.S. Government
You should get to know these important rights, which help you protect your health information.

If they continue to refuse to allow access to the medical records, you should see an attorney for a consult regarding a HIPAA violation. Also, it does not appear as though your mother in law had legal authority to take your 3 year old for medical treatment. As the parent, you need to give authorization for medical treatment, which would include a psychiatrist evaluation.

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