21st Century Cures Act Onc Rule: Implications For Adolescent Care And Confidentiality Protections

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Ensuring the confidentiality and protection of health information is the standard of care for adolescents. In 2023 and beyond, the protection of personal health information is more critical than ever. The 21st Century Cures Act Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Rule, with its requirements for the broad sharing of electronic health information and ban on “information blocking, ” poses serious concerns for confidentiality in adolescent health care delivery. The coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic has rapidly increased the use of telehealth and, thereby, patient portal use for adolescent health records, increasing risks for disclosure. Understanding the legal and clinical underpinnings for confidential adolescent health services and the clinical challenges and health information technology limitations presented by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology Rule is key to providing quality adolescent health services while implementing the Rule. A framework is presented to facilitate decision-making in individual cases by clinicians.

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