Information Sharing and Confidentiality Protection in School-Based Health Centers – SBHA

BlogResource Guide and Infographic on navigating federal privacy laws related to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

NM Adolescent and Youth Health Care – Confidentiality Guide

This is a guide to understand consent and confidentiality laws in New Mexico.

Consent occurs when a healthcare provider (ie, nurse, doctor, therapist, medical professional) explains a medical treatment to a patient, the patient asks any questions they may have, and then patient makes a decision to accept or deny the treatment. It is important for a patient to make an educated and informed decision about their health and medical care.

In a healthcare setting, the process of consent includes:

  • a patient’s ability to make a decision
  • a patient receiving and understanding the medical information
  • a patient’s voluntary decision to get treatment, or choosing to decline treatment

If a patient is under the age of 18, a parent or legal guardian must give consent for general medical health care. There are some exceptions. New Mexico state law allows for youth to provide consent, without parent permission, with regard to specific behavioral health/mental health care and reproductive health care services. Also, in the case of an emergency.

It is important to know what your state law says about providing consent and confidentiality.

New Mexico law provides that certain services can be accessed by minors (those over age 14) in NM without parental consent. These protections are listed in the New Mexico Children’s Code and state statutes. All NMDOH-funded SBHCs must post information about confidential services in their SBHC.

Confidential Services for Minors Handout

Servicios Confidenciales Para Los Menores de Edad

Once a healthcare provider provides treatment, the information shared is confidential. A patient will often need to provide written consent to share health care information.

It is important to know what information is protected through Federal HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996) and FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) laws.