Palomar Health is proud to participate in Health Information Exchanges, personal health information-sharing networks that will improve the health care you receive.
As regulations related to personal health information sharing evolve, Palomar Health will implement systems and processes to improve information sharing that supports patient care and meets regulatory requirements.
Read our frequently asked questions to learn more.
What is a health information exchange, and how does it work?
A health information exchange (HIE) is an online system that allows a health care provider to access clinical information about a patient from another health care facility in order to help make informed treatment decisions. An HIE provides a more comprehensive and consolidated clinical record for caregivers, regardless of the data's format and location. Previous medical office or hospital visits, lab results, documentation of medications and allergies and other pertinent information are available 24 hours a day. An HIE also transmits health information to public health departments and organizations. For example, your physicians and health systems can transmit immunization information to the San Diego Immunization Registry to help the County Public Health Department with early detection of disease outbreaks.
Why is Palomar Health participating in Health Information Exchanges?
One of the components of Meaningful Use as specified in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 is the electronic exchange of personal health information to improve the quality of health care. The Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have established multiple stages of meaningful use, with the second stage placing a heavy emphasis on health information exchanges capabilities and interoperability. Professionals and hospitals who do not meet these requirements can be subject to penalties. Palomar Health’s goal is to meet meaningful use and support the policy goal for the secure exchange of electronic health information. Ultimately, this will allow data to closely follow patients to the point of care and better inform critical health decisions.
How will my health information and privacy be protected?
Protecting the security and confidentiality of our patient’s information is of the utmost importance. Health Information Exchanges have created a secure system for information exchange that complies with state and federal privacy laws. Their advanced technology uses specific protocols to ensure that your health information remains private and secure.
When will my health information be shared?
Palomar will only share your health information electronically through a Health Information Exchange to support your continuation of care and as required or allowed by law. For example, when you see a health care provider who participates in the Exchange outside of Palomar Health or to notify your primary care provider of your recent visit to Palomar Health facilities.
How does a health information exchange benefit me?
By allowing your medical records to be included in the health information exchange, providers and caregivers can easily and more quickly view your health history electronically from other participating health care providers. Having more complete and current information available to your providers will help them make more informed decisions to provide you with the best possible care, including avoiding unnecessary tests or procedures.
Are there risks to opting out?
Yes. The goal of a Health Information Exchange is to provide your caregivers outside Palomar Health secure access to the best available information about your health. By opting out of health information exchange, your caregivers outside Palomar Health may have less information about you when making a diagnosis for you, or when making decisions with you about your care.
I no longer want to participate. How can I opt out?
Palomar Health medical information will be visible to your non-Palomar Health caregivers through a Health Information Exchange unless you opt out by completing our online form at palomarhealth.org/HIE
(below). You will be asked to provide the last 4 digits of your social security number.
Your choice to opt-out of the Health Information Exchange will not affect your ability to access medical care. Opting out will not prevent your caregivers from sharing your health information with authorized entities when necessary for public health or research purposes that are permitted or required by Palomar Health as well as federal and state law. In cases of medical emergency, your doctor may request to view your health record to diagnose or treat your emergency medical condition and Palomar Health will make your records available under such circumstances.
Your opt-out request will be effective approximately ten business days after Palomar Health receives your request. You are free to opt back in at any time during the registration process at any of our Palomar Health Registration locations or by calling Medical Records at 760-480-7901
to obtain an opt-in form. Return the completed opt-in form to the attention of by completing and returning our opt-in form to us at Palomar Health, Privacy Office, 120 Craven Road, Suite 224, San Marcos, CA 92078.
I've previously opted out, but I have changed my mind. How do I opt back in?
If you previously chose not to participate, you will need to notify us during the registration process at any of our Palomar Health Registration locations or by calling Medical Records at 760-480-7901
to obtain an opt-in form. Return the completed opt-in form to the attention of Palomar Health, Privacy Office, 120 Craven Road, Suite 224, San Marcos, CA 92078.