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School of Dentistry

Library Resources for the OHSU School of Dentistry

Protected Health Information in the Library

Protected Health Information (PHI) is any information in a medical record which was created, used, or disclosed in the course of providing a health care service and can be used to identify a patient.  PHI is protected under HIPAA and all students, faculty, & staff who come into contact with Protected Health Information are obligated to follow HIPAA compliance guidelines regarding how to avoid disclosing it in order meet the requirements of the law.

We take very seriously any identifiable violation of Protected Health Information (PHI) taking place within the OHSU Library at the BICC or the Learning Resource Center in the CLSB.  Cases of PHI disclosure in the Library will be reported to the appropriate school or department for retraining or disciplinary action.

Types of Protected Health Information

In order for health data to be considered PHI and regulated by HIPAA it needs to be two things:

  • Personally identifiable to the patient
  • Used or disclosed to a covered entity during the course of care

Types of PHI include:

  1. Names
  2. All geographical identifiers smaller than a state, except for the initial three digits of a zip code if, according to the current publicly available data from the Bureau of the Census: the geographic unit formed by combining all zip codes with the same three initial digits contains more than 20,000 people; and the initial three digits of a zip code for all such geographic units containing 20,000 or fewer people is changed to 000
  3. Dates (other than year) directly related to an individual
  4. Phone numbers
  5. Fax numbers
  6. Email addresses
  7. Social Security numbers
  8. Medical record numbers
  9. Health insurance beneficiary numbers
  10. Account numbers
  11. Certificate/license numbers
  12. Vehicle identifiers and serial numbers, including license plate numbers
  13. Device identifiers and serial number
  14. Web Uniform Resource Locators (URLs)
  15. Internet Protocol (IP) address numbers
  16. Biometric identifiers, including finger, retinal and voice prints
  17. Full face photographic images and any comparable images
  18. Any other unique identifying number, characteristic, or code except the unique code assigned by the investigator to code the data