TITLE 40.1
Behavioral Healthcare, Developmental Disabilities and Hospitals

CHAPTER 40.1-24.5
Community Residences

SECTION 40.1-24.5-11


§ 40.1-24.5-11 Confidentiality of information and records.

(a) The fact of admission and all information and records compiled, obtained, or maintained in the course of providing services to persons under this chapter shall be confidential.

(b) Except as provided in subsections (c) and (d), the fact of admission and all confidential information and records shall not be released without the written consent of the resident concerned.

(c) No consent for release of confidential information and records is required in the following situations:

(1) To proper medical or psychiatric authorities for the purpose of providing emergency medical or psychiatric treatment when the resident's life or health is in immediate jeopardy.

(2) Between or among residence staff within the same community residence for purposes of coordinating services for a resident.

(3) For program evaluation and/or research, provided that the director of mental health, retardation, and hospitals adopts rules ensuring the anonymity of the resident's identity. The rules shall include, but need not be limited to, the requirement that all evaluators and researchers must sign an oath of confidentiality, agreeing not to divulge, publish, or otherwise make known to unauthorized persons or the public any information obtained in the course of the evaluation or research regarding residents who have received services such that the resident who received the services is identifiable.

(4) Pursuant to an order of a court of competent jurisdiction.

(d) If a resident is deceased, consent for release of information deemed confidential under this section may be obtained from his or her personal representative, or in the absence of a personal representative, his or her surviving spouse. If there is neither a personal representative nor surviving spouse, consent may be obtained from the resident's kindred of the closest degree; if there is more than one person of lawful age within the same degree of kindred, each shall individually possess the right to provide consent.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1982, ch. 363, § 1.)