Has anyone dealt with---had any meetings about, attended conferences
concerning---the potential consequences for their records management
programs of the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act
of 1996---known for short as HIPAA? The N.C. Department of Health and Human
Services sees its possible consequences in terms of staff time, money etc.
as being in some respects greater than the effects of Y2K. The privacy
provisions concerning the handling of medical information contain stiff
language and would seem to affect records managers as well as those who have
primary control over such information. One area of ambiguity is whether
paper records are also affected by this legislation, which in most of its
language is aimed at EDI and medical information in databases or other
electronic formats.

        I have only been recently alerted to HIPAA and recently attended a meeting
about it. I would appreciate anyone else's input if he or she has been
informed that his or her program will have to deal with it.


Ed Southern

Edwin Southern, Ph.D  ([log in to unmask])
Head, State and University Records Unit
Department of Cultural Resources
Division of Archives and History
Archives and Records Section
Government Records Branch
4615 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-4615

Phone 919/733-3540
Fax 919/715-3627

Opinions expressed in this message may
not represent the policy of my agency.