(a) If the client has been informed in advance and has been given the opportunity to either agree or to refuse or restrict the disclosure, Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) may disclose protected health information (PHI) to friends and relatives of the client to the extent allowed by the client. The disclosure must only reveal PHI that directly relates to such person's involvement with the client's care or payment for such care.
(b) If the client is not present, or the opportunity to object to the disclosure cannot practicably be provided due to the client's incapacity or an emergency situation, OKDHS determines, using professional judgment, whether the disclosure is in the client's best interests. If disclosure is in the client's best interest, then the minimum necessary disclosure may be made. If disclosure is not in the client's best interest, then no disclosure is made.
(c) Oral permission to disclose PHI to friends and relatives is not sufficient when the client is referred to or receiving substance abuse treatment, mental health, or vocational rehabilitation services. Written authorization is required under those circumstances.