In administering the provisions of this subchapter, the Secretary shall have flexibility in applying the definition of health care provider under section 300jj(3) of this title, including the authority to omit certain entities listed in such definition when applying such definition under this subchapter, where appropriate.
The Secretary shall use existing authorities to encourage partnerships between health information exchange organizations and networks and health care providers, health plans, and other appropriate entities with the goal of offering patients access to their electronic health information in a single, longitudinal format that is easy to understand, secure, and may be updated automatically.
Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to preempt State laws applicable to patient consent for the access of information through a health information exchange (or other relevant platform) that provide protections to patients that are greater than the protections otherwise provided for under applicable Federal law.
The National Coordinator and the Office for Civil Rights of the Department of Health and Human Services shall jointly promote patient access to health information in a manner that would ensure that such information is available in a form convenient for the patient, in a reasonable manner, without burdening the health care provider involved.
The Secretary, in consultation with the National Coordinator, shall promote policies that ensure that a patient’s electronic health information is accessible to that patient and the patient’s designees, in a manner that facilitates communication with the patient’s health care providers and other individuals, including researchers, consistent with such patient’s consent.
To promote awareness that an individual has a right of access to inspect, obtain a copy of, and transmit to a third party a copy of such individual’s protected health information pursuant to the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act, Privacy Rule (subpart E of part 164 of title 45, Code of Federal Regulations), the Director of the Office for Civil Rights, in consultation with the National Coordinator, shall assist individuals and health care providers in understanding a patient’s rights to access and protect personal health information under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (Public Law 104–191), including providing best practices for requesting personal health information in a computable format, including using patient portals or third-party applications and common cases when a provider is permitted to exchange and provide access to health information.”.