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Ethics Issue 1:
HIPAA has made it illegal, under threat of penalty, for health care practitioners to disclose confidential health information about patients to unauthorized sources.
Sharon, a second-year nursing student, is completing a surgical rotation in a community hospital. At the breakfast table, Sharon’s husband asks her to find out what is wrong with one of his employees, who has been hospitalized for several days. He is interested in knowing when the man may be able to return to work. Is it ethical for Sharon to give her husband this information? Explain your answer.
What should health care practitioners do when family members or friends ask them for information about others that they have discovered in the course of their employment?