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New products from the HealthInfoLaw team and the most significant developments in health information law and policy.

New Products on the Use and Disclosure of Mental Health Information

On the federal level, mental health information is governed as a form of protected health information (PHI), allowing for disclosure wihtout patient consent for treatment, payment and health care operations under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act's (HIPAA) Privacy Rule.  One exception to this general rule of permitting the sharing of treatment information without... Read More >

New Products on the Common Rule

The Common Rule is a set of a federal regulations shared by fifteen Federal departments and agencies that govern all research involving human subjects conducted or supported by the relevant department or agency. With few exceptions, research institutions subject to the Common Rule must secure informed consent from each human subject, receive approval from an Institutional Review Board (IRB), and... Read More >

New Products on the Use of Information for Research Purposes

Researchers frequently create, collect, use, and/or share individually identifiable health information to conduct research.  The HIPAA Privacy Rule dictates how research is defined, who is subject to its requirements, and what the requirements are to use individually identifiable information for research purposes. The HITECH Act's modifications to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rule also... Read More >

New Products on Health Information Exchanges (HIEs)

For over a decade, stakeholders and policy-makers have been working to digitize the nation’s health care system to, among other goals, enable the electronic exchange of health information between providers.  Recently these efforts have driven the creation of legal entities known as “Health Information Exchanges” (HIEs).  HIEs are regionally-based groups of providers... Read More >

New Products on the Qualified Entity Program

 A “Qualified Entity or QE” is an organization approved by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to produce performance reports on the quality and efficiency of health care providers and suppliers. The QE program was authorized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) to encourage provider performance measurement and public reporting using Medicare... Read More >

Why health information law?

Health information law exists at the intersection of many crucial and interrelated fields: law, health care, consumer protection, information technology, public health, insurance. Each small change can trigger a daunting set of issues and challenges. offers keys to understanding the laws that govern health information and the implications they can have across health care and beyond.

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About The Project

A project of the George Washington University’s Hirsh Health Law and Policy Program, Health Information and the Law (, developed with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation,  is designed to serve as a practical online resource to federal and state laws governing access, use, release, and publication of health information. Constantly updated, the site addresses the current legal and regulatory framework of health information law and changes in the legal and policy landscape impacting health information law and its implementation with commentary and key documents.

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