Do HIPAA Laws Prevent Private Businesses From Asking About Covid?
Well, once again, we can thank social media for stirring up a "fake news" hornets nest. This time, the tin-foil-hat brigade are up in arms about privately-owned businesses possibly asking customers for proof of vaccination.
The CDC, recently, updated their guidelines in regards to mask-wearing. Basically, the organization stated that fully-vaccinated people can now go without wearing masks while indoors. However, they still recommend that non-vaccinated people wear masks.
Almost immediately following the updated guidance, many businesses adjusted their guidelines. Some state you don't have to wear a mask, inside their establishment, and some stated they wish to continue enforcing mask-wearing.
Of course, that was enough for trolls to rise from the ashes and begin their BS on social media again.
You've probably seen the same posts, that I have, about people claiming they'll sue a business that asks for proof of vaccination.
Here's a portion of the post making its rounds on Facebook, currently.
I am putting everyone on notice, if I walk into a restaurant, bar, retail store of any kind etc, and you ask me for proof of vac, I will immediately file suit against you. I will file both a personal and business lawsuit for violation HIPAA Laws.
They state it's a violation of HIPAA laws. But, is it really? In short, the answer is no, it's not a violation of HIPAA laws.
So, let's take a little dive into HIPAA.
HIPAA stands for "Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act" and is meant to protect some of the patient's health information to be protected. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, these laws apply to people in medical-related fields; which include medical and insurance providers.
In essence, most businesses aren't covered/governed by HIPAA laws, thus does not restrict them from asking about your vaccination status.
As a consumer, you have every right to not patronize a business. So, if you don't feel comfortable "going there" then give another business your money. It really is as simple as that.
For myself, I don't care either way. There are much greater issues to worry about than worrying if someone knows whether I'm vaccinated or not. However, I'd be willing to bet there are some ambulance-chaser type of attorneys that will challenge HIPAA laws soon, so stay tuned.