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RULE §8.288 Confidentiality of Test Results

Published: 2015

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(a) The results of HIV tests are confidential by law. Reports, records, and information may not be released or made public except as provided by the Texas Health and Safety Code, §§81.103, 81.104, and §85.115, which sets forth strict penalties for violations. Requests from insurance companies, the Social Security Disability Determination Division of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission, or other agencies or entities must be accompanied by the appropriate signed release form authorizing the release of HIV-specific information, consistent with the policies and procedures of the Association of American Medical Records Technicians. (b) Test results will be reported by the Texas Department of Health to the Office of Medical Support Services at Central Office where they will be reviewed by the TDMHMR consultant in infectious diseases. A hard copy of the report will concurrently be mailed by the Office of Medical Support Services, in accordance with facility policy, to the chief medical technologist or facility infection control practitioner who will be responsible for notifying the physician who ordered the test. The physician shall be responsible for ensuring that post-test counseling by a trained counselor is promptly provided when the client is informed of the test result in accordance with §405.287 of this title (relating to Counseling). Facilities which have no laboratories have the option of having reports mailed to the physician ordering the test or to the facility infection control practitioner. (c) The terms "AIDS," "ARC," or "HIV" shall not be placed on the outside of any client records. Neither shall lists be maintained to identify these clients. Because all clients are to be treated with universal precautions, signs indicating blood/body fluid precautions shall not be affixed to any surface. (d) All laboratory specimens shall be considered infectious and shall be transported in specimen transport bags, but without any labels which identify the HIV status. (No indication of HIV status is to appear on request slips or specimens.)

Source Note: The provisions of this §8.288 adopted to be effective December 13, 1994, 19 TexReg 9509; transferred effective September 1, 2004, as published in the Texas Register September 10, 2004, 29 TexReg 8841