Josephine Woolington reports:
University of Oregon Provost Frances Bronet said Friday that the UO has returned a student’s confidential therapy records to the UO Counseling and Testing Center.
Bronet’s announcement followed national criticism and debate about whether universities should be able to access confidential health records under a federal student privacy law.
Bronet said she will form a committee made up of licensed therapists, faculty, general counsel and staff to propose new or clarified policies on how medical and psychological records for any university departments are maintained and protected, and when records may be released. The committee will share a draft of these policies with the UO community next month, she said.
The student’s records were transferred, scanned and downloaded to computers in the UO general counsel’s office. The UO contends that no one read the records.
Read more on The Register-Guard.
If UO changes its policies, that’s great, but as long as such access is still legal/permissible under FERPA, Congress MUST ACT to strengthen the privacy protections of counseling and therapy records. This blogger has said all along that such records deserve – and truly need – HIPAA protection for privacy and data security. This case just proves that point.