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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Health Resources and Services Administration

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System of Record Notice 09-15-0004

System name: Federal Employees Occupational Health Data System, HHS/HRSA/BPHC.

Security classification: None.

System location:

  • Division of Federal Occupational Health, Bureau of Primary Health Care, 3rd Floor, West Tower Building, 4350 East West Highway, Bethesda, Maryland,
  • MAILING ADDRESS: 3rd Floor, West Tower Building, 4350 East West Highway, Rockville, MD 20857.

Categories of individuals covered by the system: Federal employees provided occupational health services in PHS/ Division of Federal Occupational Health (DFOH) service provision sites.

Categories of records in the system: Medical records documents are maintained at service provision sites. Health services data organized and presented for Agency billing and program planning purposes are maintained in the automated Program Operations Information System (POIS).

Authority for maintenance of the system: Title V (5 U.S.C. 7901), Health Service to Employees, and 0MB Circular No. A-72).

Purpose(s): The system is designed to provide occupational health record data for clinical and program operations, analysis, planning and evaluation.

Routine uses of records maintained in the system, including categories of users and the purposes of such uses:

  1. U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (OWCP) , may be given access to files of those persons claiming compensation benefits due to personal injury while on the job.
  2. Certain records may be disclosed to medical laboratories, medical consultants, or computer processing facilities under service contract agreement. Recipients are required to maintain adequate safeguards with respect to such records.
  3. In the event of a change in sponsorship of a PHS/DFOH service provision site or in case of mass transfer of employees covered by a PHS/DFOH service provision site to one served by a nondepartmental organization, the occupational health records will be transferred to the custodianship of the new organization.
  4. Disclosure may be made to a congressional office from the record of an individual in response to a verified inquiry from the congressional office made at the written request of that individual.
  5. In the event of litigation where the defendant is:
    1. The Department, any component of the Department, or any employee of the Department in his or her official capacity;
    2. The United States where the Department determines that the claim, if successful, is likely to directly affect the operations of the Department or any of its components; or
    3. Any Department employee in his or her individual capacity where the Justice Department has agreed to represent such employee, for example, in defending a claim against the Public Health Service based upon an individual’s mental or physical condition and alleged to have arisen because of activities of the Public Health Service in connection with such individual. Disclosure may be made to the Department of Justice to enable that Department to present an effective defense, provided that such disclosure is compatible with the purpose for which the records were collected.

Policies and practices for storing, retrieving, accessing, retaining, and disposing of records in the system:

  • Storage: Individual employee medical documents in locked files. Magnetic tape and disc storage of automated Agency billing and program planning and evaluation data.
  • Retrievability: Name and Social Security numbers, which are supplied on a voluntary basis, are used for retrieval.
  • Safeguards:
    1. Authorized users: DFOH personnel, service provision site physicians, nurses, and other allied health professionals with a need to know.
    2. Physical safeguards: Magnetic tapes, discs, and other computer equipment and computerized data are stored in areas where fire and life safety codes and security requirements are strictly enforced. All documents are protected during lunch hours and nonworking hours in locked file cabinets or locked storage areas.
    3. Procedural safeguards: A user verification and validation code is required to access POIS computer software and internal programming enables file and data element specific access control on a user specific basis. All users of personal information in connection with the performance of their jobs protect information from public view and from unauthorized personnel entering an unsupervised office. Access to automated records is strictly limited to those staff members trained in accordance with the DFOH POIS user’s manual. Contractors are required to maintain confidentiality safeguards with respect to these records. These safeguards are in accordance with DHHS Chapter 45-13 and supplementary Chapter PHS.hf: 45-13 of the General Administration Manual.

Retention and disposal: Number of years held: Automated records are retained permanently.

System manager(s) and address:

  • Director, Division of Federal Occupational Health, Bureau of Primary Health Care, Health Resources and Services Administration, 3rd Floor, West Tower Building, 4350 East West Highway, Bethesda, Maryland.
  • MAILING ADDRESS: 3rd Floor, West Tower Building, 4350 East West Highway, Rockville, MD 20857.

Notification procedures: To determine if a record exists, write to the System Manager at the address above. Individuals must provide positive identification, such as a driver’s license, passport, voter registration card, union card, or a written certification verifying his or her identity. Individuals must provide treatment locations and approximate date of treatment. Requestors should also reasonably specify the record contents being sought. An individual who requests access to a medical/dental record shall, at the time the request is made, designate in writing a responsible representative who will be willing to review the record and inform the subject individual of its content at the representative’s discretion.

Record access procedures: Same as notification procedures.

Contesting record procedures: Contact the System Manager at the above address and reasonably identify the record, specify the information being contested, and state the corrective action sought, with supporting justification.

Record source categories: Information is obtained from the Federal employee, occupational health services provision contractors, health service provider notes, DOL, OWCP and personnel officers of beneficiary Departments and Agencies.

Systems exempted for certain provisions of the act: None.