Changes may be coming to confidentiality regulations for addiction treatment records:
Federal officials are proposing to ease 40-year-old restrictions on the release of information about patients’ drug- and alcohol-abuse treatment, so their electronic medical records can be more easily used and shared.
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Officials at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, known as Samhsa, say those rules didn’t envision today’s highly integrated health-care systems that rely on the broad sharing of patients’ detailed electronic medical records to coordinate care. . . .
Many of those coordinated-care systems are finding the consent rules unworkable. . .
Only Congress can change the law itself, but Samhsa is considering revising regulations that define consent.