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We are looking into assisted living, respite care, and a change of medicare plans. Those assisting us, including a "geriatric certified care manager," an insurance services representative, and the senior living facility, are all requesting/requiring access to my parents' medical records. Is this a problem? It makes us nervous but we need to move forward with the process.

Imho, you should not provide personal information.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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Imho, you may want to work with the elder's town's Council on Aging.
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Reply to Llamalover47
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When researching facilities for my mom I was very frank about her physical limitations and my reasons for finding her an AL placement. Each facility would require an assessment by their medical staff to determine if they were a good fit for Mom's needs.

I don’t recall anyone asking for access to medical records. My major concern was that they had adequate staff and that the room and other areas were safe and accessible for her. The suggestion to have a list of conditions and medications to review is a good one. The goal is to find the correct place so she would not have to move repeatedly if the facility later finds out something that they are not equipped to handle.
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Reply to Frances73
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I would touch base with local dept. of Aging and/or an attorney who specializes in this area. The insurance rep would need info to determine what kind of coverage you need; the assisted living facility has to determine what kind of service are needed and if they can provide them. They will not take someone without knowing the nature of the problems that exist. If you were to take on someone who needs help, would you do it blind? You would also want to make sure that your parents have regular and living wills and designate POA.
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Reply to HILLARDMH
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It might be easier to create a medical and surgical history: 1 sheet of paper with all medications, list of all chronic health problems, list of any ongoing mental health issues, and list of all surgeries with dates of surgeries. In reality, that is the information they are looking for. Insurance is probably the only ones that need access.
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Reply to Taarna
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My brother went into assisted living. He saw the MD on their premises before entry in what amounted to a chat. He was not asked for medical records. I would not give access to medical records. Now if you are talking INSURANCE plan change, they of course, can have access to medical records. Be leery and careful here. It would make me very very nervous. After an initial interview with my brother he entered on care level one. The other care levels were fully enumerated in written materials, and described at what need you entered higher levels and what their costs were. He kept his AARP/United Health Care supplemental per his choice and his own doctors.
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Reply to AlvaDeer
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Is the insurance change you are seeking for a Medicare Advantage plan or a Medicare supplement ('Medigap") plan + prescription drug plan? If so, the only information you need to provide is a list of prescriptions, list of providers, and a few other questions, e.g., gender, zipcode, whether the persom is disabled, and tobacco use. We are in process of looking into this ourselves, and no medical records were requested.
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Reply to newbiewife
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In order to determine whether a facility will be able to provide the level of care needed, they will need significant health information. Narrow the choices to a few by asking if they are able to assist with whatever is needed.

Narrow your short list ranked by number. First provide your first choice the detailed records requested at the assessment that will take place prior to them being accepted.

My mom also had a geriatric care manager, certified, to help with choosing an appropriate facility. Make sure you GCM is certified by checking

https://www.aginglifecare.org

https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/what-geriatric-care-manager
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Reply to gladimhere
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Woah! How far have you got with the investigations?

If you wouldn't at this stage give these people access to your own confidential information - were you the candidate for services, that is - then don't give them your parents'.

The facility, the respite care providers may need access when it comes to assessment for admission. If so far they're just on the shortlist, forget it.

The insurance rep... I'd say no. You provide information. Your policy is sold to you based on that information. If you have given incomplete or inaccurate information it may invalidate your insurance and leave you right up a gum tree should you ever need to claim, so for heaven's sake be complete and accurate; but I'm not aware of any insurance provider's right to see your confidential medical records.

Why have you put geriatric certified care manager in inverted commas? Certified by whom? - you need to be confident that any such certification is worth the paper it's written on.
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Reply to Countrymouse
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Yes they will need to review their medical records for past medical history to help them assess the level of care your parents will need for activity of daily living accommodations.

They (or you acting as POA) have a right to limit what parts of the medical records you/they want to share under HIPPA law. The senior housing source has the right as well as a need to review your parents’ medical records but ONLY AFTER a HIPPA consent is signed and approved by your parents & given to them. You can limit the release to ADL assessments only, medications only, etc. If there is private info you or they don’t want to share, your parents or their rep can cite on the HIPPA release only what they want to be shared.

Say for instance they need a first floor unit but none are available. The geriatric case manager should have in the medical record an assessment by the PCP or documentation about the ability to walk and bend, etc. This will help the GCM to be on the be lookout for an elevator building (just an example) & having it in writing will assist the GCM even more to get you that first floor unit (if this is wanted-just a hypothetical example).

I’d review the HIPPA law for more detail. Senior housing can request financials but not the person’s entire medical life story. In my opinion they don’t need all that.
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Reply to Shane1124
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