A recent federal proposal — which would loosen privacy rules surrounding substance use disorder (SUD) treatment — is being applauded by health insurer trade groups who argue the current regulations are outdated and can hamper care coordination. However, some advocates say legislation is still needed to fully align privacy regulations for SUD treatment with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which applies to other forms of physical and behavioral health care. Others, meanwhile, are worried that such changes would weaken patient privacy protections and discourage those struggling with SUD from getting care.
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