Foreword

Hello, and welcome to Legal HIE.  My name is Helen Oscislawski – but, for obvious reasons many simply call me 'Helen O'. Either way, I am the founding member of Oscislawski LLC, a boutique health law practice in Princeton, New Jersey. I have been advising the health care sector on legal issues for over a decade, and am particularly known for my experience with guiding many through the legal minefields of electronic health information exchange (HIE).

In 2009, Governor Corzine appointed me to serve on the New Jersey Health Information Technology Commission as the 'attorney with demonstrated expertise in privacy law issues.' In 2007, I was instrumental in advising one of the first HIE initiatives in New Jersey when I helped a large health care system develop a privacy and patient consent framework based upon federal and state law. Since then, I have provided legal guidance to dozens upon dozens of organizations, health care providers, and other stakeholders on the various aspects of planning and implementing a Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO), and with regard to engaging in HIE. I have also prepared many key documents needed for HIE, including trust agreements, licensing contracts, policies, and various compliance materials, as well as helped clients navigate around fraud and abuse laws, privacy laws, and state regulations, among others, which can be implicated in HIE.

Because HIE continues to evolve at lightning speed, I dedicate time every day to stay on top of legal developments in this specific niche area. I also continue to be integrally involved as HIE takes shape at the state level, and beyond. Recently, I was asked to chair a committee that was assembled in order to provide input to the State in connection with its efforts to develop a privacy and security legal framework that is more in line with standards that support beneficial and secure health information exchange.

As the HIE journey continues across the nation, I often have observations and thoughts that I want to share and exchange with others in the industry. This was the impetus for starting the Legal HIE Blog. My goal is to make Legal HIE thought-provoking, insightful, and informative – and, at times, maybe even mildly entertaining. I hope that you find all of these qualities in the coming posts.

Thanks for taking the time to read my personal introduction. I hope that you will visit this Blog often, and share with others the items of interest you come across on Legal HIE.

Best Regards,

Helen O.