After your loved one has been injured in a Georgia nursing home or assisted living facility, one of the first things that you will want to do is investigate the circumstances of the injury. A good starting point in any such investigation is to obtain the medical records from the nursing home and from any other place in which your loved one received treatment. Acquiring medical records can seem very daunting, but it is actually fairly simple process.
The principal issue will be navigating state and federal medical privacy laws. Generally, only a patient is allowed to view the records. However, a patient provides authorization to another. Such authorization is a release under HIPPA, a federal law, for the medical provider or nursing home to release the records to a third party. When it comes to a family member for a nursing home resident, you will need to make sure that whatever guardianship or conservatorship document that is in effect specifically allows release of medical records under HIPPA. Sometimes these documents do not make that apparent.
Once you, as the loved one, have the proper authorization to request the medical records, then all you have to do is make the request in person or in writing to the facility.
Most facilities will charge a nominal fee, representing retrieval and copy costs, in order to provide you with the medical records. Please keep in mind that in some instances, such as when the resident has a host of ailments, that there may be a large amount of records. Therefore, the retrieval fee may be larger.
If your loved has been injured while residing in a nursing home, and you are not sure how to get the medical records, then please, feel free to call and speak to one of our experienced Georgia nursing home abuse lawyers today. Our consultations are always free.