HIPAA Goes To School: Clarifying Privacy Laws In The Education Environment

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Confusion regarding the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) continues to be a concern for health care professionals working in the educational environment. Following the Virginia Tech tragedy and similar incidents of school violence in recent years, educational communities and governmental agencies are analyzing the balance between individual privacy and freedom versus the safety and security of all. Health care professionals working in the school environment must stay abreast of privacy regulations regarding student records while providing needed care.