State and Federal Laws

South Dakota Law and Federal Regulation Related to Patient Information

This is a current listing of South Dakota law, however, it should be noted that at any given time there are initiatives at the federal level that deal with changes in confidentiality provisions. Also the South Dakota Legislature meets annually and may at any time change these laws.

Although not intended to be exhaustive, the following statutory and regulatory provisions pertain to the release to the public of patient records and information in the state of South Dakota:

General Provisionsc

SDCL 19-13-7 (11978) A patient has a privilege to refuse to disclose and to prevent any other person from disclosing confidential communications made for the purpose of diagnosis or treatment of a physical, mental or emotional condition, including alcohol or drug addiction, among himself, his physician or psychotherapist, including members of the patient's family.

SDCL 34-25-52 (1930) Information in records indicating that a birth occurred out of wedlock, shall not be disclosed except as provided by regulation or upon court order.

Mental Health Patients

SDCL 27A-12-26 (1975) Information acquired in the course of providing mental health services shall be kept confidential and may be disclosed outside of the hospital only under conditions including court orders or subpoenas, to a prosecuting attorney, to an attorney representing the patient having the patient's consent, or to the Department of Social Services.

Alcohol/ Drug Abuse Patients

42 Code of Federal Regulations Part 2, Confidentiality of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Patient Records

2.1 3(a) " Records ... (of alcohol or drug- abuse treatment) shall be confidential and may be disclosed only as authorized by . . . (regulation), and may not otherwise be divulged in any civil, criminal, administrative, or legislative proceeding conducted by a Federal, State, or local authority.

2.13(b) "The prohibition upon unauthorized disclosure applies irrespective of whether the person seeking disclosure already has the Information sought, has other means of obtaining it, enjoys official status, has obtained a subpoena, or asserts any other justification or basis for disclosure not expressly authorized under ... (regulation)."

2.13(c) "The prohibition on unauthorized disclosure covers all information about patients, including their attendance or absence, physical whereabouts, or status as patients, whether or not recorded, in the possession of program personnel, except as provided in . . . (regulation)."