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Social Media and HIPAA

Effective Date: September 12, 2017


Policy Statement

Social media used by workforce members is subject to the restrictions set forth in this policy.  These restrictions are intended to protect the privacy of patient information and to ensure compliance with legal and regulatory requirements, including the HIPAA Privacy Rule.  


Reason for the Policy

To provide guidelines to be followed by all Columbia University Healthcare Component (CUHC) workforce members related to their personal and professional use of social media. 


Primary Guidance to Which This Policy Responds

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)


Responsible University Office & Officer

The Office of HIPAA Compliance, Chief Privacy Officer


Revision History

Issued:  September 12, 2017


Who Is Governed by This Policy

This policy applies to all faculty, staff and students within Columbia University Medical Center (which includes the College of Physicians and Surgeons, the Mailman School of Public Health, the School of Nursing, and College of Dental Medicine), Student Health Services at the medical center and Columbia Health Services at Columbia as well as other entities within the University that have access to Protected Health Information. 


Who Should Know This Policy

All faculty, staff and students in the entities listed above.


Exclusions & Special Situations



Policy Text

To see the full text of this policy, please use the link on the right.