The HHS Office for Civil Rights has issued guidance on sharing health information on patients being treated for a mental health condition while complying with the HIPAA privacy rule.

The guidance spells out patients’ privacy rights but also circumstances under which providers can communicate with patients’ families and other caregivers. In particular, “the guidance further clarifies how providers may communicate with family members, law enforcement, or others when the patient presents a serious and imminent threat of harm to themselves or others,” according to OCR.

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