HIPAA Marketing Reminder

1 min. read

Social media is an excellent tool for communicating with your patients, but it is important to remember to be compliant with health care laws.

The Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) has a privacy rule relating directly to marketing. This rule gives individuals control over whether and how their protected health information (name, geographical identifiers, dates other than year, phone, fax, email, social security numbers, medical record numbers, health insurance beneficiary numbers, account numbers, certificate/license numbers, vehicle identifiers, device identifiers, and serial numbers, URLs, IP addresses, biometric identifiers, full-face photos, and any comparable images, any other unique ID number, characteristic or code) is used and disclosed for marketing purposes. If you would like to use a patient in a marketing testimonial or another marketing tactic, you need to have them sign a consent form that your legal team has approved before anything can be disclosed.​

Because of the HIPAA Privacy Rule and PHI, you need to be very careful about responding to comments on social media and review sites. Even if a patient posted a comment, your response to the comment could potentially identify them as a patient. It is best to take these conversations offline and consult your attorney should you have any concerns about responses or HIPAA.​

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