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August 15, 2020

Treatment Record Privacy Laws

In the early 1970's, as part of its efforts to increase treatment for substance use disorder and reduce the stigma surrounding such treatment, the federal government enacted the Drug Abuse Office and Treatment Act of 1972.1. That Act included a statutory provision for the confidentiality of patient records, now codified at 42 U.S.C. § 290dd-2. This article addresses the two most recent sets of amendments concerning treatment record privacy laws created by: (1) the passage of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act on March 27, 2020; and (2) the adoption of revisions to 42 C.F.R. Part 2, effective August 14, 2020, by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).

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