Confidentiality, Privacy and Security

Foster Parents

  • 1.  Foster Parents

    Posted 09-15-2015 10:17

    I am curious to know how other facilities handle requests for medical records from foster parents. Do you release records to foster parents when there is documentation on file from a state agency that allows them to provide consent to treatment? We ask the Missouri Children's Division to provide authorization or obtain it from the biological parents, but many foster parents believe they should be able to authorize records to be released. Would really appreciate your thoughts on this!


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    David Kozar, MPA, RHIA 
    HIM Release of Information Supervisor
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  • 2.  RE: Foster Parents

    Posted 09-15-2015 12:15

    This may be dependent on state law.  Wisconsin law changed in the last year or so and now we can release to foster parents.   Prior to that, we required a consent from the legal representative.

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    Nancy Davis
    Director of Privacy/Security Officer
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  • 3.  RE: Foster Parents

    Posted 05-14-2019 17:46
    Nancy do you know the Wisconsin Statute? I can't seem to find it answer know it changed too.

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    REBECCA KILEN, MS, RHIA
    Privacy Officer
    Gundersen Health System
    rakilen@gundersenhealth.org
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  • 4.  RE: Foster Parents

    Posted 09-16-2015 06:00

    Often times working with the child welfare system can be challenging.  Please make sure you have a copy of the court decree indicating that there is temporary or permanent custody.  Often times the law allows foster parents to have access to limited information directly related to the child, but does not contain any information related to the birth parents.  Most states do not allow foster parents to sign authorization to release information.  It is the responsibility of the state to ensure medical/psychiatric information is released with consent of the birth parent if rights have not been terminated. They still have rights.  Please check the laws in your state related to children in the custody of the child welfare system in relation to temporary custody and/or if the parental rights have been terminated.
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    Patti Nenna
    Director-Health Information Morton Hospital
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  • 5.  RE: Foster Parents

    Posted 09-17-2015 07:34

    Foster parents are not the legal guardians, the state/local agency has to give the rights to the foster parents for them to obtain any information regarding the child. Most agencies around us will supply the authorization upon placement of the child with the foster family to allow them to bring in for treatment as well as obtain information if/when needed, while the child is in their care. Once the child is not in the care of the foster family, that authorization in no longer valid and a new one will need to be obtained from the court appointed guardian.

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    Aimee Langman
    Release of Information Specialist
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  • 6.  RE: Foster Parents

    Posted 20 days ago
    I’m in Kansas and have been knee deep in this very topic for multiple reasons (consent for procedures and ROI education). In Kansas, DCF contracts with an agency and they take over the duties as guardian. It can get confusing for the Foster Parent because they do have a form that allows them to take the child to clinic visits and discuss health care issues as well as an emergency treatment form for ED visits (which is unnecessary since we have an obligation to treat and stabilize anyone who presents to the ED anyway), but they cannot sign procedure/surgical consents nor can they sign authorizations for ROI. If records are needed, usually the Case Manager will request them. It is possible for the Case Manager to sign an authorization to release the records to the foster parent, but I have never seen this happen nor have I seen them make a foster parent a DPOA or legal guardian for the child, because it’s counterproductive to their purpose as the guardian.

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    Korianne Kaleikini
    Hims Manager
    Lawrence Memorial Hospital
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