The Hipaa Law And Bipolar Disorder


Today I wanted to send a quick email about the
Hipaa law in the United States. This is a
super complicated law that virtually nobody
understands that is suppose to protect the
privacy of a person with a medical condition.

In the case of bipolar disorder, it creates
a situation where a doctor or therapist or
anyone else can NOT, and I repeat can NOT,
give a caregiver information about his/her
loved one’s treatment or condition.

So this law makes helping someone with
bipolar disorder tough. There is a quick
and simple solution that generally does
NOT work. That’s right, it generally
does NOT work but I will tell you anyway.

The solution is the Medical Information Release
Authorization which can be used with loved one’s
with Bipolar Disorder.

The Medical Information Release Authorization is
a form that one with bipolar disorder should have
signed in advance (when they are not in an episode)
and have on file, which gives you permission to
contact your loved one’s doctor (therapist/psychiatrist)
when they are in an episode, and get and give
information on your loved one’s condition.

That’s a really simple explanation of what it can do
for you and your loved one with bipolar disorder.

A Power of Attorney is another form that your loved one
with bipolar disorder should also have signed in
advance and have on file. It is a legal document
that authorizes someone you trust to take action on
your behalf. That means a designated person can sign
checks for someone with let’s say bipolar disorder,
help get Disability benefits started for someone with
bipolar disorder, make medical and financial decisions
for someone with bipolar disorder, and more.


The problem is, generally people who find my site
and get to me, have loved one with bipolar disorder
who are totally out of control and will not sign
any forms.

Then when a person tries to call a hospital, doctor,
therapist, etc. about their loved one, they are told
they can’t get any information because no release
has been signed. Then people go around in circles
trying to get information and help their loved one
with bipolar disorder only to have their efforts

This happened to me in the beginning. I got super
mad about the fact my mom’s first terrible and lazy
doctor wouldn’t tell me anything.

Then I changed my attitude after talking to a friend
who actually has nothing to do with bipolar disorder
but he inspired me to look for loop holes in the

So I studied and brainstormed and found all the loop
holes in these policies so that I could talk to
my mom’s medical people even if no releases were

I must say, these strategies are complicated and
require study and reading. I can’t write it
all out here. Actually, I have a presentation
on it as well. It’s in my supporter courses.

If you need help do one of two things. Change
your attitude try to figure out “Work around”
or “loop holes” in the system OR simply get
my course if you want to because I cover all
of this.

NOTE-This is NOT legal advice or medical advice
because I am NOT an attorney and I am NOT a
doctor. Please understand this is information
and you should take every single thing
that I say and check with your doctors, lawyers,
therapists, etc.

You can get more information on my courses/systems




I have to take off for the day now.

Your Friend,


P.S. Check out my F.ree blog with copies of emails
that I have sent in the past and lots of great
information for you:

P.P.S Check out my F.ree podcast. Hear me give
mini seminars designed to teach you information
you can’t learn anywhere else.

  1. my stepdaughter would not sign a release form while in therapy at our local health clinic for mental disorders even though she was totally dependent on her dad for everything. she felt she needed somewhere that he could not get to and control, and this is how she chose to retaliate. it hit us hard when she went into a full blown manic depressive episode, and she has borderline personality disorder so our hands were tied.

    she finally agreed to go the hospital emergency room. there she was committed due to mental breakdown.

    if only we could have helped…

    thanks for allowing us to have a voice.
    she is now responsible for her actions, cannot blame others, and is doing a lot better. she began a first job yesterday.
    an intense therapy team comes out to our home and she has private counsel with them. they are the ones she chooses to help her make decisions…not us. I think it is hard for her dad to see her depend upon someone else to talk with, but she is not getting by with sitting still and doing nothing like she used to….he has butted in on one occasion and discussed his goals for her, and how he has helped his son achieve this through vocational rehab. so this got the ball rolling on her sharing her fears of working in public work, etc.

    there is hope…just be willing to step in and let these therapists and doctors know their patient, your loved one, is not going to pull a bluff over them. this is what she had done in the past….just to get her way.

    now it is better.

  2. Dave,
    I have found the HIPA laws to be more harmful than helpful. I have had the experience of needing to speak to my spouse’s mental health professional. I called him/her and said that I knew they could not talk to me, but that I hoped they would listen. I explained the episode my spouse was going through, and was told that I should have them 302’d. I think if the M.H. professional had taken the time to speak to the family, things would have been different. He has never been diagnosed with bipolar depression, but I seriously think he has it.
    I think the mental health laws need to be updated to help protect the families. There has to be some middle ground to base the laws on.
    Thank you for your tremendous effort in keeping up posted and up to date on bipolar depression.

  3. Good morning I wanted to add comment about the ROI (release of information)
    As a former HIPPA officer for a Dual Diagnosis treatment center; I thought these 3 points were important to bring up.
    1. The patient can revoke any time. So during episode patient remembers ROI and they can revoke it.
    2 Make sure that every year you get patient to sign a new ROI as they are good 1 year from date of signing.
    3 Remember a complete new ROi must be signed each time they revoke one. They can not use the past one or alter that one. New has to be signed.
    Lady Bug

  4. Here in Canada we seek a lawyer and have a “Living Will” drawn up
    One for Medical and One for Finances,while the patient is still able to make a binding legal document.
    This solves most of the problems.
    But one word of advice. This power is not to be abused.
    Regard S. Piggott

  5. While I appreciate your efforts to get information and find solutions for issues raised dealing with the mentally ill, being the mother of two childeren with bipolarl, I find it deplorabl that you would want people to pay for necessary and vital information that could ease the very pain and suffering we are already going through. You are adding to that stress by teasing people with the tid bits of info and seeking money for the good stuff. My children are both adults 18 and 22 and both have been hospitalized in the past three years and yes the HIPPA laws made it difficult at times. I was lucky to have primary care doctors and nurses as well as their psychiatrist open as they know I am a positive advocate for my kids. Good luck with your crusade to continue aquiiring more needed infor , but I won’t be paying for it, and I dont think most of us caregivers would. There are support groups for that very reason they support they dont add to the frustration. Again thanks for trying, but if I have to go to my local politicians to try and find the loopholes I will on my own. I am so knowledgable now with all I have gone through I am happy to share whatever
    INFO I have gotten that works for my kids that I tell anyone I know in need of that precious information. Having two children attemp suicide even after being diagnosed at a young age and me being diligent in their care and getting the best doctors available I saw that sometimes no matter how valient the effort sometimes our loved ones as they reach adulthood working and going to school, we arent around them as often and their downward slope blindsides us. My son almost died of an overdose and was laying in a hospital bed and no one called until the next day and it was his best friend. If my own husband were in a care accident and not a suicide attempt would not the ER call me? So yes the HIPPA are in place to protect some, but not our adult children. Sorry for rambling, but please consider sharing you info that could save a life with those of us who desperately need it. Sorry to be so blunt, but you are adding insult to injury by expecting people to pay. This is not some feel good motivational course that people go out and buy you information could SAVE LIVES……

  6. my mother in law won’t sign dpoa papers and it makes it very difficult to get any answers about her depression. even her illness physically. she is totally dependent on others yet won’t sign papers allowing us to talk to her dr and find out if the course of action they are doing is the right way or if a 2nd opinion is necessary. now with every new dx she gets more and more depressed. if she would only tell the dr the truth he might be able to help her. i think that’s why she doesn’t want me and her son there. i guess we have to pick up the pieces. thanks for a great web site.

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