Northwest Home Care, Inc. has a policy to protect and maintain confidentiality of all client’s records. Northwest Home Care, Inc. maintains all information regarding client home care and services confidential. Records are secured and protected from loss and unauthorized use. Neither verbal nor written information will be disclosed without written consent of the client to others not directly involved in the client’s care except as allowed by law. These policies shall be adopted, implemented and enforced by Northwest Home Care, Inc.
Confidentiality of Client Information:
- Agency employees or contractors directly involved in the client’s home care, maintenance or review of the client’s service or billing record shall be instructed on the client’s right to privacy. Instructions will occur during orientation and annually. Employees will document receipt of the instructions on the “Confidentiality” form.
- Client information will not be displayed in the common areas of the agency where public viewing could occur.
- Visit notes and Timesheets will not be left out unattended prior to filing.
- Client information filed in home folders or travel charts will be secured in a confidential manner.
- Client’s information field in travel charts or copies of forms containing client information will be disposed of in the agency when the information is no longer useful to the provision of care.
- All records are to be locked away in a designated area or file cabinet when not being supervised by agency employees or after business hours.
- Employees/Contractors will only discuss client information with those who have a need to know.
- Client information will not be discussed in public areas or in the presence of visitors or others not directly engaged in the client’s care.
- Anyone with access to the client’s record area after business hours will be required to read and sign the Confidentiality Agreement. This document will be maintained in a file in the agency.
- Documents related to Quality Assessment Performance Improvement will contain only client or employee numbers, names will not be utilized.
- It shall be the policy of the agency to call the local law enforcement (911) immediately in situations involving physical abuse of client by another person.
- Northwest Home Care, Inc. will initiate an investigation of all known and alleged acts of Abuse, Exploitation, Neglect under the authority of the Elder Abuse and Neglect Act (320 ILCS 20/1 et seq.) Agency employees, including contractors and volunteers, immediately upon witnessing the act or upon receipt of the allegation the agency will initiate an investigation. ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT ON AGING: THE ELDER ABUSE PROGRAM Call the Illinois Statewide, 24-hour ELDER ABUSE HOTLINE: Call Toll-Free 1-866-800-1409 or (TTY) 1-(800) 544-5304
- The Northwest Home Care, Inc. will initiate an investigating of all known and alleged acts of abuse, exploitation, and neglect under the authority of the Children Abuse and Neglect Act. The agency will notify the ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF CHILDREN AND FAMILY SERVICES through the CHILD ABUSE HOTLINE: 1-(800) 252-2873 OR 1-(800)-25-ABUSE OR (TTY) 1-(217)-785-6605
- Ensuring the safety of the client concerning, Abuse, Neglect, and Exploitation. It is a policy of the agency to call the local law enforcement (911) immediately in situations involving physical abuse of client by another person.
- Facsimile machines:
- Fax machines will be utilized to transmit client health information only when it is necessary for the recipient to receive the information immediately.
- Highly sensitive information (e.g. HIV status, drug results, mental health information) should not be sent by fax.
- A cover sheet must accompany the documents informing the receiver that the information is confidential and allows for prompt correction of mistaken dispatches.