Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality

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Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality

In a health care setting, privacy and confidentiality are an issue of primary concern. In the contemporary world, which is characterized by a competitive workplace, privacy is critical for various reasons. For instance, avoiding the leak of employee confidential information prevents not only workplace harassment, but also ensures productivity. As such, there is the need for managers and supervisors to protect an employee’s private and personal information from access by other workers. Medical information, including details concerning the diagnosis and treatment of illnesses, are good examples of confidential information that needs an employer, manager, or supervisor’s protection (Lopatka, 2014). Therefore, the personnel in the Human Resources Department should not have told Sara’s co-workers that she was absent from work because she was undergoing treatment for active tuberculosis. Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality

The fact that Sara felt isolated because both her employers and her colleagues refused to spend time with her reinforces the assertion that leaking an employee’s confidential information results in adverse effects. Such effects include workplace harassment and a decrease in performance and productivity (Lopatka, 2014). On this note, although Sara has not yet shown reduced performance and productivity, it is expected that her output will diminish with time. Now that another home health aide has begun exhibiting symptoms resembling those that she had before she was diagnosed with active tuberculosis. In brief, employers and other hired personnel such as managers and supervisors should protect employees’ privacy and confidentiality to evade the impacts associated with their breach, which ranges from the worker’s reduced performance and productivity to low-profit realization. Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality


The Human Resources Department personnel have already leaked the confidential information that Sara missed work because she was on medication after being diagnosed with active tuberculosis. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the managers and other leaders in the organization to manage the situation, especially now that Sara’s situation of isolation has been worsened by another home health aide’s exhibition of symptoms resembling those that she had before she was diagnosed with active tuberculosis. One of the approaches through which the managers and leaders can achieve this is by training the employees on the importance of personal safety in the workplace (Rischitelli, 1995). The leaders should also educate all the workers about the importance of privacy and confidentiality protection as well as the adverse effects associated with their breach. In this regard, the firm’s managers and leaders should ensure that all the workers, including the supervisors, are aware that privacy and confidentiality breach results in isolation, which, in turn, leads to workplace harassment. In particular, during the training, the workers should be told to imagine how they would feel if they were in Sara’s situation. Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality

Embracing a privacy and confidentiality control system is another method that the agency’s managers and other leaders should utilize to handle this situation. The system should ensure that not even the employer has access to or can use the applicants’ personal and private information (Rischitelli, 1995). On this note, the managers and leaders have knowledge about the management of personal information. Such knowledge is necessary as it will ensure that employee’s privacy and confidentiality is protected. Besides, the system should ensure that information related to sickness or family medical leave is submitted in confidence. The adoption of such a system will make sure that all the employees’ confidential details are safeguarded against unauthorized access and use. Consequently, no other employee will have to experience the situation that Sara went through due to the disclosure of private details about her medical condition. As a result, the organization will not go through problems such as a decline in performance and productivity, which could lead to reduced profitability.

Lopatka, K. T. (2014). The handbook rules charade.’Labor Law Journal,’65(2), 69.
Rischitelli, D. G. (1995). The confidentiality of medical information in the workplace.’Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine,’37(5), 583-593.
Healthcare Privacy and Confidentiality