Key questions for pediatrics about health information privacy and release of protected health information (PHI) under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) often relate to parental rights to access the health information of their children. HIPAA acknowledges: “In most cases under the Rule, a parent, guardian, or other person acting in loco parentis (collectively, ‘parent’) is the personal representative of the minor child and can exercise the minor’s rights with respect to PHI, because the parent usually has the authority to make health care decisions about his or her minor child.” This means that the parent can “stand in the shoes” of the child such that covered entities (eg, physician practices) are required to treat the parent as the individual with respect to uses and disclosure of PHI and the individual’s rights under the privacy rule. However, there are exceptions to the rule regarding parents as...

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