Minnesota Hospital Association


release of patient information

Minnesota’s hospitals have a long history of working collaboratively with members of the media providing timely, accurate information about hospitalized patients. Federal guidelines on the release of patient information, pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), and state requirements under the Minnesota Health Records Act may both apply when disclosing information about a patient. All health care providers and hospitals have legal obligations to protect the personal and medical privacy of patients and their families.

The first obligation of Minnesota health care organizations is to safeguard the life, health, privacy and other legal rights of the patient. It is the policy of the Minnesota Hospital Association (MHA) and its member hospitals and health systems to cooperate with the news media, in accordance with state and federal privacy regulations.

MHA provides a general summary of the legal and practical considerations that may apply in dealing with the media. Hospital and health system staff should consult with legal counsel and follow organizational policies to ensure patient information is protected when dealing with public disclosures of patient information.

View MHA's guidelines on the release of patient information to the media and public.