Privacy Notice

Notice of Privacy Practices

Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities

YOUR RECORDS ARE PRIVATE We understand that information we collect about you, your child and records of the services and supports we provide, are personal.  Keeping these records private is one of our most important responsibilities.  The Board must follow many laws to protect your privacy.  For the Beacon School records, we follow the federal FERPA laws.  For adult services, and certain services for children, we follow the federal HIPAA laws.  In addition, we follow many laws specific to Ohio Developmental Disability Boards.  For this notice, we will use the term “records” to mean the paper or electronic records we maintain about you.
WHO SEES AND SHARES MY RECORDS? Your records may be used and disclosed by the employees and volunteers at the Board who serve you, as well as persons or agencies who work for us and sign strict confidentiality contracts.
Our organization includes ATCO, the bus garage, the Service and Supports Administration, and Beacon School.
At Beacon School, for example, records may be shared with “school officials” who have a “legitimate educational interest” in your child.  “Educational interest” means any matter related to your child’s instruction, developmental or behavioral support, dietary, health or safety.  “School officials” include teachers, paraprofessionals, aides, bus drivers and administrators at Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities.
In general, we use and disclose your information:

  • For teaching, behavioral and medical support, transportation and school administration,
  • To provide the full range of services we provide:  early intervention, habilitation, supported employment, and other services.  For example, your service and support coordinator will review your records to recommend an individual service plan,
  • To get payment for services provided: for example, the billing clerk uses service records to submit bills to the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities, and
  • For other operations to operate and manage the board:  these include improving quality of care, training staff, managing costs, and conducting other business duties.  For example, a quality assurance reviewer may audit your records to determine whether appropriate services were provided,
  • To remind you or a guardian or an appointment for services,
  • To solicit funds.
WHAT IF MY RECORDS NEED TO GO SOMEWHERE ELSE You may be asked to sign a separate permission form allowing your records to go somewhere else if:
1.  One of our employees who serves you needs it sent to other places;
2.  You want us to send it to another person, school or agency
The permission form tells us what, where, why and to whom the information must be sent.  Your signed permission form is good until the date you put on the form.  You can cancel your permission at any time or limit the amount of information sent by letting us know in writing.
COULD MY RECORDS BE RELEASED WITHOUT MY PERMISSION? There are limited situations when we are permitted or required to disclose your records, or parts of them, without your signed permission.  These situations include:

  • Record transfers to other schools your child enrolls in,
  • Reports to public health authorities to prevent or control disease or other public health activities,
  • To protect victims of abuse, neglect, or domestic violence,
  • For oversight including investigations, audits, accreditation and inspections, such as are conducted by the Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities and federal agencies,
  • When a court order, subpoena or other legal process compels us to release information,
  • Reports to law enforcement agencies when reporting suspected crimes, when responding to an emergency, or in other situations when we are legally required to cooperate,
  • In connection with an emergency, or to reduce or prevent serious threat to public health and safety,
  • to coroners, medical examiners and funeral directors,
  • to victims of alleged violence or sex offenses,
  • For workers’ compensation programs,
  • For specialized government functions including national security, protecting the president, operating government benefit programs, and caring for prisoners,
  • In connection with “whistleblowing” by an employee of the Board.

All other uses not described above require that we obtain your signed permission.

WHAT ARE MY RIGHTS REGARDING PRIVACY, ACCESS TO MY RECORDS, AND THE ACCURACY OF MY RECORDS? You have legal rights concerning your privacy, access to your records, and the accuracy of your records:

  • If you request, we will show you your records, or give you a copy.
  • If you think some of the information is wrong, you may ask that it be changed, or that new information be added.
  • If you request, we will mail all communications to a confidential address.
  • If you request, we will provide a list of any places where your records have been sent.
  • You may request that we make additional limits on how we use or disclose your information, although we are not obliged to honor these requests.
  • You may receive a paper copy of this notice.

To exercise any of these rights, mail or email your request to:
HIPAA Privacy Officer
Athens County Board of Developmental Disabilities
801 West Union Street
Athens, Ohio 45701
(740) 594-3539 x224
Ask any employee if you need help in putting your request in writing.

POLICY CHANGES We are required by law to abide by the terms of this notice.  From time to time we may make changes to our policies, and if and when we do, your records will be protected by our new, changed policies.  Our current notice will always be available on our website.
ADDENDUM TO NOTICE OF PRIVACY PRACTICES The Section of your Notice of Privacy Practices which addresses Sharing your Personal Information without authorization is amended to add the following language


Disability Rights Ohio (DRO) filed a state-wide class action captioned Ball v. Kasich Case No. 2:16-cv-282 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio.  The suit was filed on March 31, 2016 against the Governor, Department of Developmental Disabilities, Department of Medicaid and Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities.  The Ohio Association of County Boards Serving People with Developmental Disabilities may become a defendant in the lawsuit.  The Plaintiffs are represented by DRO and other lawyers from Massachusetts, Illinois, Michigan and Washington D.C.


The action potentially affects all adults with DD.  The parties to the lawsuit, through their lawyers, have sought and will continue to seek documentation, including Protected Health Information, on individuals who are or who may be a part of this lawsuit, or who may have information relevant to this lawsuit or who are simply receiving services from DD Boards.  The DD Board will comply with requests for information and may provide Protected Health Information on any person served by the DD Board to the lawyers for any of the parties.  All information provided in connection with this lawsuit is covered by a protective order issued by the court which complies with HIPAA and other privacy regulations and which ensures that the information about any individual cannot be disclosed outside of the lawsuit without their permission.  At the conclusion of the lawsuit, all protected health information which was disclosed or retained by any party in the course of the lawsuit will be destroyed.


For further information on the lawsuit or the Protective Order, contact OACBDD.

QUESTIONS OR COMPLAINTS? If you have any questions about this notice, or you think that we have not protected your records and you wish to complain about any privacy or records access matter, please contact:
Attn:  HIPAA Privacy Officer
Athens County Board of DD
801 W. Union Street
Athens, Ohio 45701
We will never retaliate against you for filing a complaint.  Further, if you are not satisfied with the results, you may also complain to the federal government:
  For Beacon School issues:
Family Policy Compliance  Office
U.S. Department of Education
400 Maryland Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20202
For any other issues:
Secretary of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C.  20201