Can businesses request proof of vaccination despite HIPAA laws?

According to one lawyer, requesting proof of vaccination does not violate HIPAA laws.

Posted: May 17, 2021 4:25 PM

EUGENE, Ore. – With the updated guidance, many people still have questions about whether businesses can ask for proof of the vaccine. Some have asked whether doing so violates the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA).

However, according to one lawyer, that claim is false. People may feel like HIPAA protects them from being asked about their medical information, but that’s not true, according to legal experts. People can always ask about your health information, but you can almost always decline to answer.

Harvard law professor Glenn Cohen said HIPAA rules only apply to specific businesses and entities.

“Because the average business is not a covered entity or a business associate of a covered entity within the meaning of HIPAA, the statute does not prohibit them asking them about vaccination status,” Cohen said.

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