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I was in the E.D. yesterday. A technician disconnected my I.V. and EKG leads and said I was free to go. My nurse and evaluating ED physician did not come in to give me written/verbal discharge instructions. I asked the technician, "Well, is that it? Am I free to leave?" She said yes. So, I left since my nurse/physician were no where to be found. I put in a call to the Director of the E.D. today and left a voicemail after 6 p.m. Would this scenario be, potentially, considered a violation of the HIPAA PRIVACY RULE, Title 45 C.F.R. 164 Subpart E? Is there anything else I can do to resolve this? "
It is not a violation of HIPAA which involves privacy rights and protection of patient health information.
As for what you can do to resolve the situation on not being given written discharge instructions, you would need to report this to the hospital administrator. Most hospitals require that a nurse go over written discharge instructions with you, and have you sign a form that you understand the instructions. If a patient is unable, then a responsible person who is with them can sign for them. Clearly, the technician had no authority to discharge you.
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