Sec. 34.009: Confidentiality; Privilege

(a) Any information pertaining to a pregnancy-related death or severe maternal morbidity is confidential for purposes of this chapter.

(b) Except as provided by Subsection (b-1), confidential information that is acquired by the department and that includes identifying information of an individual or health care provider is privileged and may not be disclosed to any person. Information that may not be disclosed under this subsection includes:

(1) the name and address of a patient or a member of the patient's family;

(2) any service received by the patient or a member of the patient's family;

(3) the social and economic condition of the patient or a member of the patient's family;

(4) medical, dental, and mental health care information related to the patient or a member of the patient's family, including diagnoses, conditions, diseases, or disability; and

(5) the identity of a health care provider that provided any services to the patient or a member of the patient's family.

(b-1) Confidential information that is acquired by the department under this section that includes identifying information of an individual or health care provider may be securely disclosed to an appropriate federal agency for the limited purpose of complying with applicable requirements under the federal Preventing Maternal Deaths Act of 2018 (Pub. L. No. 115-344).

(c) Review committee work product or information obtained by the department under this chapter, including information contained in an electronic database established and maintained under Section 34.012, or any other document or record, is confidential. This subsection does not prevent the review committee or department from releasing information described by Subsection (d) or (e) or from submitting the report required by Section 34.015.

(d) Information is not confidential under this section if the information is general information that cannot be connected with any specific individual, case, or health care provider, such as:

(1) total expenditures made for specified purposes;

(2) the number of families served by particular health care providers or agencies;

(3) aggregated data on social and economic conditions;

(4) medical data and information related to health care services that do not include any identifying information relating to a patient or the patient's family;

(5) information, including the source, value, and purpose, related to gifts, grants, or donations to or for use by the review committee; and

(6) other statistical information.

(e) The review committee may publish statistical studies and research reports based on information that is confidential under this section, provided that the information:

(1) is published in the aggregate;

(2) does not identify a patient or the patient's family;

(3) does not include any information that could be used to identify a patient or the patient's family; and

(4) does not identify a health care provider.

(f) The department shall adopt and implement practices and procedures to ensure that information that is confidential under this section is not disclosed in violation of this section.

(g) Information that is confidential under this section is excepted from disclosure under Chapter 552, Government Code, as provided by Section 552.101 of that chapter.

(h) The review committee and the department shall comply with all state and federal laws and rules relating to the transmission of health information, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (Pub. L. No. 104-191) and rules adopted under that Act.

Comments

Added by Acts 2013, 83rd Leg., R.S., Ch. 527 (S.B. 495), Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2013.

Amended by:

Acts 2017, 85th Leg., 1st C.S., Ch. 12 (S.B. 17), Sec. 6, eff. August 16, 2017.

Acts 2019, 86th Leg., R.S., Ch. 601 (S.B. 750), Sec. 11, eff. June 10, 2019.