HHS Issues New Rule to Support Reproductive Health Care Privacy Under HIPAA

The Biden-Harris Administration has announced a Final Rule through the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to enhance the HIPAA Privacy Rule and protect reproductive health care privacy. This rule prohibits the disclosure of protected health information (PHI) related to lawful reproductive health care under certain conditions. The rule was issued in response to community feedback for better patient confidentiality and to prevent misuse of medical records related to reproductive health care. The rule mandates regulated health care providers and organizations to modify their Notice of Privacy Practices and obtain a signed attestation for certain requests for PHI related to reproductive health care. The current HIPAA Privacy Rule remains in effect until the new rule is implemented.