NRPM: Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information. iii. Information available for amendment or correction.

11/03/1999

We are proposing that the right to request amendment or correction extend to all protected health information that would be available for inspection and copying under § 164.514. We would only require covered plans and providers to amend or correct that information maintained in a designated record set but would encourage the development of systems that would accommodate these types of changes for all data collections. For protected health information that is maintained solely by a business partner or that has been materially altered by a business partner, the covered plan or provider would need to make arrangements with the business partner to accommodate any requests.

This right would not be intended to interfere with medical practice, or modify standard business record keeping practices. Perfect records are not required, but instead a standard of reasonable accuracy and completeness should be used. In addition, this right would not be intended to provide a procedure for substantive review of decisions such as coverage determinations by payers. It would only affect the content of records, not the underlying truth or correctness of materials recounted therein. Attempts under the Privacy Act of 1974 to use this correction mechanism as a basis for collateral attack on agency determinations have generally been rejected by the courts. The same results would be intended here.