Statement of Confidentiality

Confidentiality is an essential component of quality health care. Most Dartmouth College health records are maintained through a secure electronic medical record (EMR) system and are separate from other college records. Counseling records are also maintained in this system, behind additional security that separates them from all other medical records. For more information on Counseling records, please see the Counseling Center confidentiality statement.

Patient information is available to the Health Service health care professionals on a need-to-know basis and only to the extent that the health care professional(s) are involved in your care at the Health Service. Need-to-know is defined as the minimum use, disclosure or access necessary for a health care provider to adequately perform their specific patient care or other responsibilities. The Open Communicator portal and secure messaging facilitate confidential communication between students and providers. We recommend that all communication between students and providers utilize secure messaging to ensure maximum confidentiality. Communication by email is not secure.

We reinforce our fundamental commitment to confidentiality through yearly mandatory training for all Health Service employees. Every staff member and volunteer must sign a confidentiality agreement on an annual basis. Regular audits of the EMR provide an extra measure of protection.

We cannot release any of your health information without your written authorization, except as described in our Notice of Privacy Practices, including:

  • Treatment: in the event of your treatment at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center or another medical center, the Health Service may share relevant health information as needed for continuity of care.
  • Payment: we may share your information with your health plan to obtain payment or pre-authorization for services provided to you.
  • Healthcare operations: quality assessment, staff training, licensing and contracted third-party business associates are all examples of healthcare operation.
  • If, in our judgment, releasing information is necessary to protect you or others from a serious threat to health or safety.
  • If it is authorized or required by law.
  • If you are a minor (under the age of 18 years), Dartmouth College complies with New Hampshire law regarding release of information

When you sign a release of information we will ask you to identify which dates of service and issues may be discussed.  You may choose to exclude specific information from the release. We will only share information which is relevant to the current clinical concern.  The Dartmouth College Health Service will further require that you sign a new release every time you choose to share information.  This policy is for your protection, to allow you maximum control as to how your information is shared.

You can review the full details of our policy in the Notice of Privacy Practices. Copies are also available at the Reception Desk in Dick’s House.

Should you have questions about the Confidentiality policy or the procedures we follow, please contact the Medical Records office (603-646-9400). For questions relating to the confidentiality of Counseling records, call 603-646-9442.

Download a copy of the Dick's House Confidentiality Statement.

Read the Counseling Confidentiality Statement.