State Codes and Statutes

State Codes and Statutes

Statutes > North-carolina > Chapter_131E > GS_131E-141

§ 131E‑141.  Inspection.

(a)        The Departmentshall inspect home care agencies in accordance with rules adopted by theCommission to determine compliance with the provisions of this Part and therules established by the Commission.

(b)        Notwithstanding theprovisions of G.S. 8‑53, "Communications between physician andpatient," or any other provision of law relating to the confidentiality ofcommunications between physician and patient, the representatives of theDepartment who make these inspections may review any writing or other record inany recording medium which pertains to the admission, discharge, medication,treatment, medical condition, or history of persons who are or have beenclients of the agency being inspected unless that client objects in writing toreview of that client's records. Physicians, psychiatrists, nurses, and anyoneelse involved in giving treatment at or through an agency who may beinterviewed by representatives of the Department may disclose to theserepresentatives information related to any inquiry, notwithstanding theexistence of the physician‑patient privilege in G.S. 8‑53,"Communication between physician and patient," or any other rule oflaw; provided the client has not made written objection to this disclosure. Theagency, its employees, and any person interviewed during these inspectionsshall be immune from liability for damages resulting from the disclosure of anyinformation to the Department. Any confidential or privileged informationreceived from review of records or interviews, except as noted in G.S. 131E‑124(c),shall be kept confidential by the Department and not disclosed without writtenauthorization of the client or legal representative, or unless disclosure isordered by a court of competent jurisdiction. The Department shall instituteappropriate policies and procedures to ensure that this information shall notbe disclosed without authorization or court order. The Department shall notdisclose the name of anyone who has furnished information concerning an agencywithout the consent of that person. Neither the names of persons furnishinginformation nor any confidential or privileged information obtained fromrecords or interviews shall be considered "public records" within themeaning of G.S. 132‑1, " 'Public records' defined." Prior toreleasing any information or allowing any inspections referred to in thissection, the client must be advised in writing by the licensed agency that theclient has the right to object in writing to release of information or reviewof the client's records and that by an objection in writing the client mayprohibit the inspection or release of the records.

(c)        An agency mustprovide each client with a written notice of the Division of Health ServiceRegulation hotline number in advance of furnishing care to the client or duringthe initial evaluation visit before the initiation of services. (1971, c. 539, s. 1; 1973, c.476, s. 128; 1981, c. 586, s. 2; 1983, c. 775, s. 1; 1991, c. 59, s. 1; c. 761,s. 34; 1999‑113, s. 4; 2005‑276, s. 10.40A(b); 2007‑182, s.1.)