Personal Health Information (PHI)
PHI isn’t just the “medical” stuff you think about.
PHI = oral or written information about you, if the information:
- relates to your physical or mental health, including family health history;
- relates to the provision of health care, including the identification of persons providing care;
- any other information about you that is included in a record containing personal health information (s. 4(3)).
PHI can include information from police, parole, CAS, schools and more. These are legally called non-Health Information Custodians (HIC). Once this information from non HICs gets in your health record at an agency, doctor, or hospital it is permanent.
If the record is shared the information can be used for or against you. This is great when you want your x-rays shared, but it may be a problem when your health record is being subpoenaed or your pain doctor does not believe you because of a mental diagnosis. Be clear with providers about your needs and privacy expectations. You can limit access to information by having the organization holding PHI lockbox it. You can lockbox diagnosis, events but there are limitations. More next issue.