Patient Education

  • Mouth Healthy –  information you need to take better care of your mouth today so it will take care of you for life.
  • National Children’s Dental Health Month – February each year
  • Fluoride in Water – is safe and it works!
  • Special Needs Directory – In an effort to increase access to dental care for patients with special needs, the Washington State Dental Association and the Departments of Oral Medicine and Pediatric Dentistry at the University of Washington have collaborated to create a Directory of Dentists who provide care to patients with special needs. This directory provides a partial listing of dentists who treat patients with mild and/or moderate-severe manifestations of a number of different developmental and acquired special needs. The directory was initiated by the DECOD program and has been recently updated to include new categories and providers.
  • Oral Health Education – Educational Resources for families
  • The Dental Profession – The professional degree awarded to DDS, DMD, dental hygenists, dental anesthesia assistants and dental assistants.

Dr. Gardiner Professional Affiliations

We believe it is important our patients know we are actively involved in continuing education, and that we recognize the importance of staying informed and trained in the latest treatments available. Dr. Gardiner is a member of several dental associations and clubs, and you may find it helpful to learn about them.

Patient Privacy and HIPAA Compliance

We acknowledge how important it is to protect your privacy and to comply and uphold the tenets of HIPAA.  All new patients will be given our written Privacy Practices and sign an acknowledgment of receipt.  Established patients may also be requested to update their forms from time to time, as life circumstances may require you to modify who has access to your healthcare records.  Updating your privacy forms ensures that we are complying with your current wishes to release or not release certain information to a guardian, family member or someone else you appoint to be involved in your care.  We are also HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliant, and as such are held to the highest Federal standards in protecting your health information.

HIPAA Protected Health Information Definition? HIPAA is very comprehensive in terms of laying down guidelines governing the sharing or disclosure of Patient Health Information (PHI) and has five separate titles dedicated to such stipulations. The HIPAA Title II is called Administrative Simplification or the AS. To ensure that the privacy of health information is upheld in the prevailing healthcare system, HIPAA emphasizes upon the AS stipulations, which in turn influences the DHHS to endorse national standards for electronic healthcare transactions.

AS is concerned with setting-up national standards for electronic healthcare transactions and benchmarks like identifiers for healthcare providers, health insurance plans and employers. The provisions laid down by the AS address the crucial issue of maintaining the security and privacy of a patient’s health data. The most significant AS HHS (Department of Health & Human Services) Rules that are nationally recognized for this purpose are mentioned in [45 CFR §160, §162 and §164]. These rules are:

  • The Unique Identifiers Rule (National Provider Identifier)
  • The Enforcement Rule
  • The Privacy Rule
  • The Security Rule
  • The Transactions and Code Sets Rule

Exceptions Regarding HIPAA Protected Health Information (PHI)

There are some exceptions to the general understanding of PHI:

1) In cases when the covered entity is the Employer — personal information about employees that is maintained as a part of the Employment Records is outside the realm of PHI. 2) Information about an individual recorded as a part of educational pursuits, including professional training, is not PHI. 3) Many specific clauses have been defined by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (20 USC) where certain bits of information can be accessed/shared without the liability to inform the concerned individual. Patient treatments and services ARE inside the realm of PHI, and are therefore protected.