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Read about additional issues that are of broad concern to health care administrators, physicians and other providers, and patients and families who are working for patient- and family-centered change today.

Pandemic Planning and Patient- and Family-Centered Care

Quarantine signWith the arrival of H1N1 influenza hospitals and clinics began making decisions about policies and practices to aid in efforts to prevent disease transmission. In October 2009, a working group was convened during the Institute's Hospitals and Communities Moving Forward with Patient- and Family-Centered Care Intensive Training Seminar in Minneapolis, MN to create a set of guidelines that reflect the core concepts of patient- and family-centered care when developing a pandemic plan. During any outbreak of infectious disease, it is important to take steps to contain the illness and to remember that family members are stewards of patient safety and integral to the healing of loved ones. The continued presence of a family member with a patient, during a pandemic has both safety and psychological components.

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HIPAA—Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act

Cover from Advances newsletter

The Federal law, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), requires confidentiality of medical records and other individually identifiable health information. The Institute of Medicine (IOM) publication, Crossing the Quality Chasm: A New Health Care System for the 21st Century, states that health care must be patient-centered and sets forth several "rules to redesign and improve care," including "shared knowledge and the free flow of information." Can health providers comply with HIPAA while following the IOM recommendations? How can hospitals and health care organizations strike a balance between engaging patients and families in planning care and decision-making-which requires the sharing of information to assure safety and quality of care-while safeguarding patient confidentiality? The free download HIPAA-Providing New Opportunities for Collaboration addresses these questions and more.

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