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Michigan Supreme Court’s Recent HIPAA Decision

     On July 13, 2010, the Michigan Supreme Court rendered the long- awaited decision in a case called Holman v Rasak.  The issue before the Court was whether the lawyers that represented the doctors and hospitals were required to obtain a court order before meeting with an injured person’s physicians.  The Court ruled that the physician/hospital is required to seek a “Qualified Protective Order” before meeting with an injured person’s physician.  This order would require that information learned during the meetings be used only for the lawsuit and that the information be returned or destroyed at the end of the lawsuit.  The Court also noted that additional provisions can be put into the “Qualified Protective Order” by the judge, such as requiring that the injured person’s lawyer be present or notified about the meeting.   This decision represents a victory for injured persons throughout Michigan.  No longer do they have worry about secret meetings between the hospitals/doctors.