Privacy & Security

(please also see our Disclaimer and Important Legal Information)

Employee Services, Inc. dba ESI Employee Assistance Group (ESI)

HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices

Effective: 4/14/2003
Revised:   1/14/2014

THIS NOTICE DESCRIBES HOW MEDICAL INFORMATION ABOUT YOU MAY BE USED AND DISCLOSED AND HOW YOU CAN GET ACCESS TO THIS INFORMATION.  PLEASE REVIEW IT CAREFULLY.

Our Obligations

ESI is required by federal law to maintain the privacy of protected health information (PHI) and provide individuals with notice of its legal duties and privacy practices and procedures with respect to PHI.  ESI also is required by federal law to abide by the terms of this Notice of Privacy Practices (Notice) currently in effect.  ESI reserves the right to change the terms of this Notice and its policies and procedures for all PHI it maintains in accordance with the law.  ESI will inform you of such changes by promptly revising the Notice and posting the revised Notice on our web site.

Uses and Disclosures

Privacy is maintained for all PHI.  Only those responsible for delivering, maintaining and paying for services provided to you have access to this PHI.   No PHI will be disclosed to any third party other than those mentioned without your written authorization unless required by state or federal law or when there is a threat of harm to you or another.

ESI is permitted by law to use and disclose PHI for the purpose of treatment, payment and health care operations.  In order to appropriately manage your case, information is exchanged within ESI and, as needed, with a network Service Provider.  Such information would include, but would not be limited to, treatment progress, diagnostic evaluation, and recommendations for continued care. All PHI will be disclosed with the minimum necessary information.

In the case of an Administrative Referral, the only disclosures to your employer’s designee will be with your written authorization.

You retain the right to revoke any authorizations at any time.  Disclosures made prior to such revocation, however, will not be affected.

Individual Rights

You have the right to

  • access PHI;
  • receive confidential communications in regard to your PHI;
  • request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of your PHI (ESI is not obligated by law to agree to any restriction requested);
  • inspect and copy your PHI (a fee for copying information may be imposed);
  • receive this Notice electronically;
  • obtain a paper copy of this Notice from ESI upon request;
  • amend your PHI; and
  • receive an accounting of any disclosures of PHI.

    Complaints

  • If you believe your HIPAA privacy rights have been violated, you may file a complaint with ESI’s office or the Secretary of Health and Human Services.  You will not be retaliated against for filing a complaint.Contact InformationYou may contact Kathleen Jahnke, ESI Chief Clinical Officer, LMHC at 1-800-821-5040, extension number 106, Monday through Friday between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, regarding how to file a complaint with ESI’s office or for further information concerning any aspect of this Notice.Privacy Issues for Web Site UsersUse of the ESI web site may include the use of email, corporate networks, external links or other resources beyond our control.  We are not able to ensure privacy beyond our web site.  We encourage web site users to read the privacy policies of any external pages that are visited.

    We periodically issue newsletters and marketing information, and are committed to an “opt in/opt out” permission based philosophy.  If you voluntarily submit your email address to receive information, we may subsequently issue information via email.  However, we respect the right to opt out, and will remove emails from our list on request.  There may be exceptions, such as issuing newsletters to the workforce of any employer who subscribes their employees to receive information as a component in their general benefit package.

    We may collect IP addresses or use “cookies” for the purpose of analyzing web site traffic and usage.  We may use “cookies” to record preferences that enable us to serve our clients or web site visitors.

     

    Employers, Supervisors and Human Resource Staff Privacy Policies

     

    We may require information about you or your organization to serve you.  To the extent that our networks are providing you with services, we may share contact or other information with them for the purpose of serving you.  We will not share, sell, rent or lend your company information to entities outside our service network for the purpose of marketing.

     

    We do not share employee information unless we have obtained permission (or as required by law in instances such as child or elder abuse, or in a life-threatening situation).  If we have obtained permission and the information is shared with you, it may be copied and kept in a confidential client file.  This file is kept secure in compliance with applicable laws, regulations and guidelines governing confidentiality of records.  Please read the employee privacy policies for other policies that may apply to all members.

     

    Potential Customers

     

    We may collect information regarding potential clients in response to requests for information about our services.  This information is only for our use in communicating with these organizations and we do not share it.

     

    We may issue newsletters or other marketing information by email to organizations that have given us contact information at trade shows, industry events or the like.  However, we are not interested in sending email to any organizations or individuals who do not want to receive it, and we respect a right for anyone to “opt out” at of any mailings at any time.

     

    Providers

     

    We collect information on prospective providers to qualify them to work within our networks.  This information is strictly for use by ESI.  In order to serve our clients and to market to prospective clients, we may share general information on contracted providers in our network.

     

    We respect and share any professional confidentiality standards in terms of treatment for individual employee members and for employers.  We exchange information necessary to serve our clients, obtaining or requiring “release of information” documents from individual members when appropriate.

     

     Use of Materials

     

    General web site users may use, download, print and store materials from our web site for personal use only.

    By virtue of our contract, our client employers and employees are granted permission to distribute resources found on this web site on an as-is basis within their workforce or immediate family. These materials may not be altered or edited without prior permission and must contain appropriate copyright information if applicable.

    We have no authority to grant permission for any materials that are obtained through the use of web sites found via links on our web site.  Permission for use of materials found on external web sites must be obtained from those web sites.

    Any other use of materials found on this web site such as reproduction, display or editing of these materials is strictly prohibited unless written permission is granted by ESI.

    To request permission to reprint or reproduce materials appearing on this web site, contact the Webmaster.

     

    Online Privacy Policies for Members

     

    We will not sell, rent, distribute or otherwise disclose your email or information we gather about you to any other party for marketing or for commercial purposes.  When we make a referral to a provider and share information in that process, it is with your knowledge and permission.  Your email will be stored so that we may communicate with you in the delivery of services.

    We may collect non-personal information on an aggregate basis such as web site usage or traffic patterns. This information is used to help us make service improvements. Such general information may also be shared with employers, providers or other parties in the form of reports.  However, we do not collect or share information about any specific individual user’s traffic patterns or web site usage.

    We may collect voluntary information from you to serve you.  We will not share your information without your permission.  We may also collect information for passwords or through the use of “cookies” to enable us to remember you and your preferences on your next visit.

    We provide links to outside pages.  These are offered for informational purposes only as a service to our members. We neither endorse nor certify information found on these web sites, and are not responsible for the content or privacy policies of external web sites over which we maintain no control.  We encourage web site users to read the privacy policies of external pages that are visited.

    We encourage members to use our toll-free service number to speak with counselors in matters that require confidentiality.  For privacy and security purposes, we recommend you do not include any detailed health information in your email.