hc04With HIPAA, there are really no exceptions to the rules, except in a few circumstances. Other than that, all states must utilize the HIPAA rules and regulations. If the state’s rules and regulations exceed HIPAA’s patient protection policies, then they generally receive precedence over the HIPAA rules.

For instance, a state requires doctors to obtain a signed patient consent form for disclosure of health records in relation to new patients, whereas HIPAA does not.

That means the state’s rule precedes the HIPAA rule and is acceptable because it offers a higher level of protection. As long as the state’s law provides better patient information protection, it will supersede existing HIPAA laws. While that is beneficial to a client or customer, it can be confusing to the dental professional. You need to be sure that you not only follow HIPAA rules, but also abide by state laws.