PART VI. HIV INFECTION, ARC, AND AIDS
Part heading amended by L 1988, c 290, §1.
Informed consent for testing or disclosure, see §325-16.
Quality assurance standards for HIV antibody testing, see §325-17.
§325-101 Confidentiality of records and information. (a) The records of any person that indicate that a person has a human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, AIDS related complex (ARC), or acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS), which are held or maintained by any state agency, health care provider or facility, physician, osteopathic physician, laboratory, clinic, blood bank, third party payor, or any other agency, individual, or organization in the State shall be strictly confidential. For the purposes of this part, the term "records" shall be broadly construed to include all communication that identifies any individual who has HIV infection, ARC, or AIDS. This information shall not be released or made public upon subpoena or any other method of discovery. Notwithstanding any other provision to the contrary, release of the records protected under this part shall be permitted under the following circumstances:
(1) Release is made to the department of health in order that it may comply with federal reporting requirements imposed on the State. The department shall ensure that personal identifying information from these records is protected from public disclosure;
(2) Release is made of the records, or of specific medical or epidemiological information contained therein, with the prior written consent of the person or persons to whom the records pertain;
(3) Release is made to medical personnel in a medical emergency only to the extent necessary to protect the health, life, or well-being of the named party;
(4) Release is made from a physician or osteopathic physician licensed pursuant to chapter 453 to the department of health to inform the sexual or needle sharing contact of an HIV seropositive patient where:
(A) There is reason for the physician or osteopathic physician to believe that the contact is or has been at risk of HIV transmission as a result of the index patient having engaged in conduct which is likely to transmit HIV; and
(B) The index patient has first been counseled by the physician or osteopathic physician of the need for disclosure and the patient is unwilling to inform the contact directly or is unwilling to consent to the disclosure of the index patient's HIV status by the physician, the osteopathic physician, or the department of health; provided that the identity of the index patient is not disclosed; and provided further that there is no obligation to identify or locate any contact. Any determination by a physician or osteopathic physician to disclose or withhold disclosure of an index patient's sexual contacts to the department of health pursuant to this subsection which is made in good faith shall not be subject to penalties under this part or otherwise subject to civil or criminal liability for damages under the laws of the State;
(5) Release is made by the department of health of medical or epidemiological information from the records to medical personnel, appropriate county and state agencies, blood banks, plasma centers, organ and tissue banks, schools, preschools, day care centers, or county or district courts to enforce this part and to enforce rules adopted by the department concerning the control and treatment of HIV infection, ARC, and AIDS, or to the sexual or needle sharing contacts of an HIV seropositive index patient for purposes of contact notification as provided in paragraph (4); provided that the identity of the index patient, if known, shall not be disclosed; provided further that release of information under this paragraph shall only be made by confidential communication to a designated individual charged with compliance with this part;
(6) Release of a child's records is made to the department of human services for the purpose of enforcing chapters 350 and 587A;
(7) Release of a child's records is made within the department of human services and to child protective services team consultants under contract to the department of human services for the purpose of enforcing and administering chapters 350 and 587A on a need to know basis pursuant to a written protocol to be established and implemented, in consultation with the director of health, by the director of human services;
(8) Release of a child's records is made by employees of the department of human services authorized to do so by the protocol established in paragraph (7) to a natural parent of a child who is the subject of the case when the natural parent is a client in the case, the guardian ad litem of the child, the court, each party to the court proceedings, and also to an adoptive or a prospective adoptive parent, an individual or an agency with whom the child is placed for twenty-four hour residential care, and medical personnel responsible for the care or treatment of the child. When a release is made to a natural parent of the child, it shall be with appropriate counseling as required by section 325-16. In no event shall proceedings be initiated against a child's natural parents for claims of child abuse under chapter 350 or harm to a child or to affect parental rights under chapter 587A solely on the basis of the HIV seropositivity of a child or the child's natural parents;
(9) Release is made to the patient's health care insurer to obtain reimbursement for services rendered to the patient; provided that release shall not be made if, after being informed that a claim will be made to an insurer, the patient is afforded the opportunity to make the reimbursement directly and actually makes the reimbursement;
(10) Release is made by the patient's health care provider to another health care provider for the purpose of continued care or treatment of the patient;
(11) Release is made pursuant to a court order, after an in camera review of the records, upon a showing of good cause by the party seeking release of the records;
(12) Disclosure by a physician or osteopathic physician, on a confidential basis, of the identity of a person who is HIV seropositive and who also shows evidence of tuberculosis infection, to a person within the department of health as designated by the director of health for purposes of evaluating the need for or the monitoring of tuberculosis chemotherapy for the person and the person's contacts who are at risk of developing tuberculosis; or
(13) Release is made for the purpose of complying with sections 325-16.5 and 801D-4(b). Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit a victim to whom information is released pursuant to section 325-16.5 from requesting the release of information by a physician, osteopathic physician, or HIV counselor to a person with whom the victim shares a privileged relationship recognized by chapter 626; provided that prior to such release, the person to whom the information is to be released shall be required to sign a notice of HIV status disclosure advising them of the confidentiality provisions regarding HIV test results and the penalties for unlawful disclosure to any person other than a designated physician, osteopathic physician, or HIV counselor.
As used in this part, unless the context requires otherwise:
"Medical emergency" means any disease-related situation that threatens life or limb.
"Medical personnel" means any health care provider in the State, as provided in section 323D-2, who deals directly or indirectly with the identified patient or the patient's contacts, and includes hospital emergency room personnel, the staff of the communicable disease division of the department of health, and any other department personnel as designated by the director.
(b) Recording or maintaining information protected under this part in a separate portion of an individual's file which is clearly designated as confidential shall not be construed as a breach per se of that individual's confidentiality.
(c) No person shall be compelled to consent to the release of information protected under this part or to disclose whether the person has been tested for the presence of HIV infection in order to obtain or maintain housing, employment, or education.
(d) Any person who receives or comes into possession of any record or information released or disclosed pursuant to subsection (a) shall be subject to the same obligation of confidentiality as the party from whom the record or information was received. [L 1986, c 161, pt of §1; am L 1987, c 238, §1; am L 1988, c 290, §§2, 3; am L 1989, c 377, §1; am L 1991, c 141, §2; am L 1992, c 162, §1; am L 1998, c 238, §4; am L 2009, c 11, §38; am L 2010, c 135, §7]
Advisory committees for infected health care workers, see §325-18.