When a claimant files a workers’ compensation claim, they automatically gives a limited waiver of the regular patient-physician privilege of confidentiality of medical records.  (Section 8-47-203, C.R.S.).  This means that, if a medical record may arguably contain relevant information to the adjudication of the case, a claimant must sign an authorization for release of relevant medical records, or face a possible dismissal of they case.  Sample release forms are available at the Division of Workers’ Compensation.  Individual insurance companies and self insured employers often use their own forms to obtain relevant records.  Medical providers welcome clearly stated and recent release forms since those providers are governed by federal (HIPAA) and state medical confidentiality acts.  Those confidentiality acts do not preclude any self-insured employer or insurance company from obtaining relevant medical records as long as a proper release is provided.

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