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M.S.A. §144.295

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Disclosure of Health Records for External Research

Methods of Release:

ealth records may be released to an external researcher for medical or scientific research if the records were created before Jan. 1, 1997, if the patient has not objected to it.  For records created after Jan. 1, 1997, the provider must disclose to the patient that the records may be released unless the patient objects.  The provider must use reasonable efforts to get the patient’s written authorization describing the release of records, which does not expire but can be revoked or modified by the patient.  The provider must provide the patient with information on how to contact the external researcher, if requested.  Authorization may be established if the authorization form is mailed to the patient two times with a notice saying that the patient’s records will be released if there is no objection and 60 days have expired since the last notice.

Duties of Researcher:

In making the disclosure, the provider must ensure that the use or disclosure does not violate limitations under which it was collected and that the use or disclosure in individually identifiable form is necessary to perform the research.  The researcher must  adequately safeguard the unauthorized disclosure of the information, and must have a procedure for destruction of any information that identifies the patient.  Further use or release of the records that are individually identifiable to another person is prohibited without the patient’s consent.

Current as of June 2015