In an interview with WFAA-TV regarding COVID-19 vaccine passports, Healthcare partner Jeff Drummond discussed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the protections provided to an individual. Ultimately, an individual must be the one to tell their medical provider to provide the airline with their health information rather than the airline directly contacting their doctor or medical provider.
“You have the control with the data,” he said. “You have the right to disclose any and all information.”
Once an airline receives health information, Jeff noted that the airline must protect that data and notify the public if there is a breach.
“Once they get the data, they have to protect it. They have to notify you if there’s a breach but other than that, that’s the end of their obligation under either HIPAA or Texas state law,” he added.
In addition, he spoke with FOX 26 Houston about the legalities of vaccine passports. In the interview, he noted, “Most of the federal laws related to privacy in the U.S. are sectoral – they relate to a particular industry. For an airline or a regular governmental agency that’s not a healthcare component of a governmental agency, they don’t have any HIPAA obligations. So, HIPAA just doesn’t apply to that.”
To read more, view WFAA-TV’s “VERIFY: No, a vaccine passport does not violate HIPAA” and FOX 26’s “Legalities of vaccine passports and Texas Gov. Abbott’s ban.”
Jeffery P. Drummond represents hospitals, physicians, laboratories, surgery centers, and other healthcare providers in transactional and regulatory matters. He is best known for his experience in HIPAA and medical record privacy, as well as other data privacy and security issues. Since 2002, Jeff has written a weblog on HIPAA matters at HIPAABlog.blogspot.com, and he regularly tweets about HIPAA @JeffDrummond. In recognition of his practice, Jeff has been recognized among The Best Lawyers in America in the area of Healthcare Law since 2018 and has been ranked in Texas for Healthcare by Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business.