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Conditions/Release of Patient Information

 

Privacy regulations issued by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) strictly govern the use and release of a patient's personal health information. If you're a member of the media and want information about a patient at a Banner Health hospital, here's what to know:

  • You need to have the patient's first and last name before we can release his or her condition. Without a name, condition reports can't be released.
  • If you have the patient's first and last name, the only information that can be released to a member of the media is a one-word condition report – unless the hospital media relations representative receives consent from the patient or, if the patient is under 18 years of age, the patient's parent or guardian.
  • Patients have the right to deny any information be released about their condition – even that one-word condition report. In the case of a minors, the parent or guardian has the authority to make that decision.
Here are the one-word patient conditions we can release:
  • Undetermined: Patient awaiting physician assessment.
  • Good: Vital signs are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious and comfortable; indicators are excellent.
  • Fair: Vital signs are stable and within normal limits. Patient is conscious but may be uncomfortable; indicators are favorable.
  • Serious: Vital signs may be unstable and not within normal limits. Patient is acutely ill; indicators are questionable.
  • Critical: Vital signs are unstable and not within normal limits. Patient may not be conscious; indicators are unfavorable.
  • Treated and released: Received treatment but not admitted.
  • Deceased
Note: The term "stable" should not be used as a condition. Furthermore, this term should not be used in combination with other conditions, which by definition, often indicate a patient is unstable.
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