Accidents happen, and when they do, the last thing you want to worry about is how to maintain your privacy. But what if something happens when you need emergency care? For medical records, sharing too much information can be harmful to you and those close to you. The first step is making sure that you or anyone else involved understands what is needed. This way, no one will inadvertently give away confidential information during an emergency. Here are some tips on how to keep your personal information private after an accident.

Document Everything for Insurance Claims, and Call the Police

This may seem like an obvious step to take, but it can be essential to protect yourself while you deal with the aftermath of an accident. This is a great way to file a police report and get a release form from an insurance company for their records. It’s also essential to get all the information that is needed for billing and insurance claims.

Ensure Privacy Rights When Doctor and Hospital Information Is Needed

Regardless of the type of accident, it’s crucial that you understand medical records will need to be made available to emergency personnel. This includes doctor and hospital records for treatment. You should also protect these records from access by others who aren’t directly involved in your medical care. Over 4 billion records have been exposed in data breaches, according to researchers. With so many breaches there, it’s hard to know where you are most vulnerable. But by taking steps to keep the information on a need-to-know basis, you can help protect your privacy.

Get Yourself and Your Vehicle Out Of Danger

Did you know that, on average, 12.4 people die for every 100,000 inhabitants on U.S. roadways? These types of accidents are usually covered in the news, which makes it harder for you to stay private. You need to ensure that the only person who has access to information is emergency personal, and try to keep outsiders where they belong: out of the loop. This is especially important if you are involved in an accident with other drivers or pedestrians. Once your car has been towed, it’s important that you have the vehicle information sent to a trusted third party.

Put Your Key Information into a Password-Protected Computer

At the hospital, the information from your insurance company will not automatically be sent to the emergency room, so you must have the key information protected so that the hospital staff will have the correct information to administer the correct medication. For instance, a family member can only give out the name of a parent and the home’s address.

Knowing What to Share

First, you need to know what type of information to disclose. Your social security number, name, address, and date of birth are a few things you need to keep private. You can share other personal information, like your address, if you are getting ready to move. And you can share the phone numbers of your emergency contacts. Some hospitals have a list of family members and emergency contacts who can be contacted. If you don’t have access to this information, you should still make a list so that no one has to guess.

Assess Your Personal Risk for Identity Theft

Before sharing any personal information, like your medical record, check to see what type of risk you have. Someone with bad intentions can buy stolen data from an open online database. If you did something with your identity that will probably cost you thousands in the future, they would go for your financial information instead. Check your online profile, bank accounts, credit cards, and credit scores. This should give you an idea of how much information you may need to maintain privacy.

Keep Track Of Personal Information

You can often find personal information in the car or on belongings you are wearing. Accident victims are often shocked when they arrive at the hospital and find out that information is not a part of their medical records. This can lead to medical errors and being physically harmed because of mistakes made with vital information.

Before an accident, take a moment to think about what you and others need to know to communicate effectively with medical professionals. Taking the time to plan for an emergency can be a relief, and it can also prevent unnecessary and harmful sharing of personal information. You may keep medical records private and decide how much information you want to share with anyone. The important thing is to keep your personal information confidential until you need to.

After an accident, you will also want to do your best to keep your information private. If you have received a DUI and live in Connecticut, you could face 6 months in prison. This is the kind of information you would want to keep on a need-to-know basis so that it cannot be held against you in the future. But by following the tips in this article, you should be on your way to keeping your and your family’s information safe.