Hospital won't release my mom's health information without her verbally consenting. What are my rights?

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I have medical POA for my mother and live out of state. I live in Ga, she is in NC. She just got admitted to the hospital and I'm trying to find out how she is. I keep getting road blocks telling me she has to be on the phone to verify who I say I am. What are my rights?My brother is faxing over to the charge floor nurse the POA.

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The largest hospital in our locale has a password set up that gets people with these issues. I hope that your mom can get through to them that you are who you say you are. After you are through this round, ask about setting up a password with her local hospital network account. That may help in the future.
Good luck. This is so frustrating for people who are doing the right thing, but without these safeguards in place, anyone can get our medical information. My, how times have changed - for better and worse.
Best wishes,
When my husband was in the hospital last year, I had medical POA, health care surrogate, was the only one on the list to have access to his records by phone, etc.; we knew how covered the hospital wants to be. On the day after his surgery, the doctor saw him very early in the morning, and I missed seeing her. When I asked him what she said, he was still groggy from the surgery, plus he has a problem hearing her. He has a hearing problem anyway, and she is very soft spoken. He is too shy to tell her. So, I called the nurses' station and asked about him, saying that they had all of the papers on file plus I was his wife. They even had him verify on the phone that it was OK to talk with me. Still no results. So, I gathered my folder of legal papers, went to the hospital, and asked for the head nurse. I wasn't rude, but I guess they all knew I was about to ask for something; because, all of their heads turned. Then one came to me. I introduced myself, showed her the papers, and said I would like to see the records from the doctor's earlier evaluation. They all looked at each other as if that had never been done before. She "looked" for the papers, said they must still be on the cart, and told me to visit with my husband while she looked for them. I had barely been in his room five minutes when the doctor called me and gave me a full report. I thanked her and told her I wasn't being difficult; I just wanted to know my husband's condition. I reminded her of his permission on the phone with the nurse and all of the papers, and she assured me that she or the nurse would call or leave a message for me in the future. I then explained about his hearing problem and her soft voice, which she should have known or had on his chart anyway. They get along fine now. I have noticed she tries to talk more loudly and closer to him, and I have no problem with making appointments, scheduling surgery, or getting information.

The organization and the individuals are not necessarily uncooperative or bad. They are overworked and have a lot of responsibility. I can understand why they have to be so careful about giving information to the proper people. I had been through this with my mom. That's why I knew to be over prepared in this case.

I think you should fax copies of your papers, with a cover letter explaining the situation, and explain that you want it confirmed in writing on the cover letter when your mother confirms her permission for you to have her information. Sometimes it is easier for the staff to make instantaneous decisions and go on the next thing on their minds than to take note of something that requires time. Talk to the head nurse, get her name and the name of her supervisor; and, send a copy with your letter and papers to them. A person with confidence who knows the rights of the patient and the patient's family and/or surrogates can get a lot more done than just an out-of-town phone call. Good luck. It makes things much more pleasant when things go smoothly, and I am sure they will.
Pishko, who was with your Mom when she was admitted to the hospital or was she on her own? Usually the admitting staff will ask Mom, or whomever came with her, who is her contact person and can that contact person sign the HIPAA form. Hospitals prefer only one contact name... thus when that person gets info he/she can call the rest of the relatives.
They need the Heathcare POA or HIPAA To give you any information. Once they receive the paperwork they will talk openly. My experience is that if the situation is life threatening they will take information.
Some how the hospital needs to verify who she is. That is impossible to do by telephone. To receive information by phone I have had the same sort of thinf occur. I had to have the folks get on the phone to acknowledge that they want information released to me. This exercise has even happened twice during the same phone call. Anybody can call and say they are POA. So, yes, call Mom with a nurse or someone else present to have mom acknowledge it is ok to talk to you. Many hospitals now have a system in place that you need a code number that you would only be able to get from mom or staff if they know who you are.

Not all POA's give you carte blanche access to information. Check yours, does it require Mom's incapacity to become activated? If so, you most likely will need to visit Mom to obtain the necessary information.

Why is mom in the hospital? Have you talked with her? Is she able to tell you herself?
HIPPA..that is why..who did she allow to have assigned to the list of contacts? Over the phone is not allowed they do not know who is calling and with all the identity theft going on they need face to face . If you are not on the list your mom has to be the one to change it or add to it.If she is unable to do so, then the social worker will have to intervene.Been there,done that so calm down and ask face to face.Have a great day and good luck
My wife was taken by ambulance to Framingham Union hospital
I called to see what was going on.
The operator told me I had to go to the hospital, they wouldn't even say she was there.
I called back and asked for patient information
PI said she was still in the ER and transferred me to the nursing station.
ER connected me to her nurse who told me everything I asked about
Once they get the Medical POA they should release her information. If they don't see if your mom can sign some kind of waiver or form that gives them permission to discuss with you. My mom's doctor gave us a form so she could give permission for them to talk to me.
They should except the medical POA. I have Moms on file with the local hospital and at her doctors. This is the whole reason for it. As soon as you fax it and I'd send a copy of ur license proving its you. Once this is done, I would need a good reason why they won't allow it after that.
I have medical and financial POA on my mother. But it doesn't do alot of good. Most places want her on the phone saying you can speak for her. For financial matter they want her signature. Perhaps a neighbor that lives nearby can go in and get a general idea of what is happening and can call you.

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