Without legislation, the OFR team—and the individuals and entities from whom it requests information—are bound to their own interpretations of the confidentiality provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), 42 U.S.C. § 290dd-2, 42 C.F.R. Part 2, and state or local confidentiality laws. This may result in an unwillingness to provide the requested information due to unduly restrictive interpretations and/or confusion caused by varying conclusions among jurisdictions. Second, OFR legislation helps to enhance the legitimacy of OFR teams, especially in areas where some community members may be reluctant to establish a team on their own. Finally, legislation promotes uniformity and consistency among the local teams within the state.
This resource was developed by the Legislative Analysis and Public Policy Association (LAPPA) through funding from the Office of National Drug Control Policy, Executive Office of the President.
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