MGMA to HHS: Pull the Disclosures Rule

Following a survey of about 1,340 members, the Medical Group Management Association is calling on the HHS Office for Civil Rights to withdraw its proposed rule governing the accounting of disclosures of protected health information.

The association contends the rule is overly burdensome and unworkable, and asks that HHS engage group practices and other stakeholders to develop a consensus-driven solution. "If enacted as proposed, the rule would require medical practices that maintain electronic patient information to have the capability to product a detailed report of every instance a patient's information was accessed by any staff member for any reason, including submitting claims for payment," according to an MGMA statement.

More than 96 percent of survey respondents report it would be "somewhat" to "extremely" burdensome to produce a report that meets the proposed rule's requirements. And 94 percent said the same about the burden of obtaining such reports from business associates.

Sixty-five percent of respondents noted they have received zero or one request for a disclosure report per full-time equivalent physician during the past 12 months. "Considering how infrequently physician practices receive these requests from patients, the proposed rule fails to meet the statutory requirement to balance the needs of patients with the burden on providers," says MGMA President William Jessee, M.D.

Survey results are available here.


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