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Privacy of Health Information Post-Dobbs and OCR Guidance on the Protections Afforded under HIPAA


On June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court issued its opinion in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, overturning precedent that protected access to abortion services before the point of fetal viability. Instead, the Supreme Court stated that state legislatures have the authority to regulate abortion, leading several states to enact laws banning the procedure or to enforce previously unenforceable laws banning abortion. In response to the Dobbs decision, on June 29, 2022, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (“HHS”) Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) released guidance materials discussing the role that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, and its implementing regulations, as amended (collectively, “HIPAA”) plays in safeguarding the protected health information (“PHI”) of women.

Click here to read Ropes and Gray’s Client Alert on the guidance.


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