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Office: (808) 225-1453

Fax: (808) 254-2827


Notice of Psychologist Policies and Practices to Protect the Privacy of Your Health Information



Uses and Disclosures for Treatment, Payment, and Health Care Operations

I may use or disclose your protected health information (PHI), for treatment, payment, and health care operations purposes with your consent. To help clarify these terms, here are some definitions:

“PHI” refers to information in your health record that could identify you.

“Treatment, Payment and Health Care Operations”

  • “Treatment” is when I provide, coordinate or manage your health care and other services related to your health care. An example of treatment would be when I consult with another health care provider, such as your family physician or another psychologist.

  • “ Payment” is when I obtain reimbursement for your healthcare. Examples of payment are when I disclose your PHI to your health insurer to obtain reimbursement for your health care or to determine eligibility or coverage.

  • “Health Care Operations” are activities that relate to the performance and operation of my practice. Examples of health care operations are quality assessment and improvement activities, business-related matters such as audits and administrative services, and case management and care coordination


Uses and Disclosures Requiring Authorization

I may use or disclose PHI for purposes outside of treatment, payment, or health care operations when your appropriate authorization is obtained. An “authorization” is written permission above and beyond the general consent that permits only specific disclosures. In those instances when I am asked for information for purposes outside of treatment, payment or health care operations, I will obtain an authorization from you before releasing this information. I will also need to obtain an authorization before releasing your Psychotherapy Notes. “Psychotherapy Notes” are notes I have made about our conversation during a private, group, joint, or family counseling session, which I have kept separate from the rest of your medical record. These notes are given a greater degree of protection than PHI.

You may revoke all such authorizations (of PHI or Psychotherapy Notes) at any time, provided each revocation is in writing. You may not revoke an authorization to the extent that (1) I have relied on that authorization; or (2) if the authorization was obtained as a condition of obtaining insurance coverage, law provides the insurer the right to contest the claim under the policy.


Uses and Disclosures with Neither Consent nor Authorization

I may use or disclose PHI without your consent or authorization in the following circumstances:

  • Child Abuse – If I have reason to believe that child abuse or neglect has occurred or that there exists a substantial risk that child abuse or neglect may occur in the reasonably foreseeable future, I must immediately report the matter to the appropriate authority.

  • Adult and Domestic Abuse – If I, in the performance of their professional or official duties, know or have reason to believe that a dependent adult has been abused and is threatened with imminent abuse, I must promptly report the matter to the appropriate authority.

  • Health Oversight Activities –  If the Hawaii Board of Psychology is investigating my competency, license or practice, I may be required to disclose protected health information regarding you.

  • Judicial and Administrative Proceedings – If you are involved in a court proceeding and a request is made for information about the counseling or psychotherapy services provided to you and/or the records thereof, such information is privileged under Hawaii law, and I shall not release information without the written authorization of you or your legally appointed representative or a court order. The privilege does not apply when you are being evaluated for a third party or where the evaluation is court ordered. I shall inform you in advance if this is the case.

  • Serious Threat to Health or Safety – I may disclose protected health information regarding you where there is clear and imminent danger to you or another individual or to society, and then only to appropriate professional workers or public authorities. If you are at risk, I may also contact family members or others who could assist in providing protection.

  • Workers Compensation – If you have filed a Worker’s Compensation claim, I may be required to disclose PHI about any services I have provided to you that are relevant to the claimed injury.

There may be additional disclosures of PHI that I am required or permitted by law to make without your consent or authorization, however the disclosures listed above are the most common.


Patient’s Rights and Psychologist’s Duties

Patient’s Rights:

  • Right to Request Restrictions – You have the right to request restrictions on certain uses and disclosures of protected health information. However, I am not required to agree to a restriction you request.

  • Right to Receive Confidential Communications by Alternative Means and at Alternative Locations – You have the right to request and receive confidential communications of PHI by alternative means and at alternative locations. (For example, you may not want a family member to know that you are seeing me. On your request, I will send your bills to another address.)

  • Right to Inspect and Copy –  You have the right to inspect or obtain a copy (or both) of PHI in my mental health and billing records used to make decisions about you for as long as the PHI is maintained in the record. I may deny your access to PHI under certain circumstances, but in some cases you may have this decision reviewed. On your request, I will discuss with you the details of the request and denial process.

  •  Right to Amend – You have the right to request an amendment of PHI for as long as the PHI is maintained in the record. I may deny your request. On your request, I will discuss with you the details of the amendment process.

  • Right to an Accounting – You generally have the right to receive an accounting of disclosures of PHI. On your request, I will discuss with you the details of the accounting process.

  •  Right to a Paper Copy – You have the right to obtain a paper copy of the notice from me upon request, even if you have agreed to receive the notice electronically.


Counselor Duties:

  • Most uses and disclosures of psychotherapy notes, uses and disclosures of PHI for marketing purposes, and disclosures that constitute a sale of PHI require patient authorization;

  • Other uses and disclosures not described in the privacy notices will be made only with authorization from the individual;

  • Patients have the right to restrict certain disclosures of PHI to health plans/insurance companies if the patients have the right to be notified following a breach of unsecured protected health information.

  • I am required by law to maintain the privacy of PHI and to provide you with a notice of my legal duties and privacy practices with respect to PHI.

  • I reserve the right to change the privacy policies and practices described in this notice. Unless I notify you of such changes, however, I am required to abide by the terms currently in effect.

  • If I revise my policies and procedures, I will notify you accordingly. I will usually provide you with the revision during an in-person meeting, but if necessary I will send you the revision via postal mail, or via electronic mail.


Questions and Complaints

If you have questions about this notice, disagree with a decision I make about access to your records, or have other concerns about your privacy rights, you may contact me at (808) 225-1453.

If you believe that your privacy rights have been violated and wish to file a complaint with my office, you may send your written complaint to Brian R. Lim, PhD, 970 N. Kalaheo Avenue, Suite A-216, Kailua, Hawaii 96734.

You may also send a written complaint to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I can provide you with the appropriate address upon request.

You have specific rights under the Privacy Rule. I will not retaliate against you for exercising your right to file a complaint.

VI. Effective Date, Restrictions, and Changes to Privacy Policy

This notice has been in effect since March 12, 2007.

I reserve the right to change the terms of this notice and to make the new notice provisions effective for all PHI that I maintain. I will provide you with a revised notice by providing you with the revision during an in-person meeting or, if necessary, via postal mail or electronic mail.

Thank you for your consideration of this policy. Please direct correspondence concerning this policy to:

Brian R. Lim, PhD

970 N. Kalaheo Avenue

Suite A-216

Kailua, Hawaii 96734

Office: (808) 225-1453

Fax: (808) 254-2827

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