Frequently Asked Questions : Employee Access & Disclosure

May a provider disclose patient information to treat a family member of the patient?

Yes. The HIPAA Privacy Rule permits a covered health care provider to use or disclose protected health information for treatment purposes. The Rule does permit a doctor to disclose protected health information about a patient to another health care provider for the purpose of treating another patient (e.g., to assist the other health care provider with treating a family member of the doctor’s patient).  However, the HIPAA Privacy Rule permits but does not require a covered health care provider to disclose the requested protected health information. Thus, the doctor with the protected health information may decline to share the information even if the Rule would allow it.

For more information please go to HHS FAQs