Medical Ethics/HIPAA


A doctor prescribed a newer diet pill. He is a respected doctor in the area. He went over all of the side effects of the prescription.  I was on another diet pill before this but this one was "better" suited for me.  When I took it to the one pharmacey the kept showing me this magazine article about the drug and that I have to meet certain guidelines to be on it. I said I know and that the doctor decided I would be a good candidate for it. The next day when I went to pick it up the pharmacist told me according to my prescription history and other factors like my bmi has to be a certain percent. I told them that my doctor knows everything and that we went over everything. She said she needed to talk to my doctor because of these qualifications.  I told her that I would call my doctor and tell them they refused to fill it and she said that is not what she said and she asked me if I wanted to see this article about it from this magazine.  I told her I trusted my medical doctor more then her.  The next day I called my doctor and told him that they wouldn't fill it because of these qualifications that they said I don't fit.  My doctor to me I do fit them and he didnt know why they are even questioning it. I later found out that the pharmacy was calling and asking what my bmi is and what my weight was and if I had these other diseases. Is this pharmacy in violation of my hippa rights.  To call my doctor to ask him about my bmi and weight is crazy.  He knows how to prescribe the medicine that he gives me


No, the pharmacy did not violate your HIPAA rights.  One healthcare provider is allowed to contact another healthcare provider.  

I suggest that the pharmacist complied with the standard of care and made sure that you were not wrongfully prescribed a medication. The reality is that the pharmacist understands the medications better than your physician.  Also, the pharmacist did not fail to fill the prescription but wanted clarification and verification before providing a potentially harmful medication.

I would be thankful that you have a pharmacist that cares enough to provide you with information so that you do not take a potentially harmful medication that is not correctly prescribed.

Very truly yours,

Paul D. Friedman, M.A., Ph.D., J.D.

Medical Ethics

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Paul D. Friedman, M.A., Ph.D., J.D.


In addition to my law degree, I have a master's degree in bioethics and a doctorate of philosophy involving comparative medical, legal and business ethics. I am an adjunct professor at a medical school teaching ethics to healthcare professionals and graduate students.

I can answer questions dealing with general ethics principles, including medical ethics, research ethics and bioethics. I am not a moralist and do not interject subjective values such as what is morally right and wrong. Also, I do not give legal advice over the internet.

For more information, you can view my webiste at WWW.EXPERTETHICS.COM


I have been a civil trial attorney since 1989 with a masters degree in bioethics and a doctorate of philosophy involving comparative ethics.

State Bar of Arizona
State Bar of Colorado (inactive)
District of Columbia Bar (inactive)
Federal Bar
Licensed in the Arizona District Court
Licensed in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
licensed in the United States Supreme Court
American Bar Association
American Association for Justice
Arizona Trial Lawyers Association
American Society for Bioethics and Humanities
Kennedy Institute of Ethics

A list of my copyrighted publications and presentations is contained at WWW.EXPERTETHICS.COM

Bachelor of Arts 1985
Juris Doctorate 1989
Master of Arts in Bioethics 2004
Doctorate in Philosophy 2006

Awards and Honors
Phi Beta Kappa
Multiple Who's Who
Outstanding Achievement Award in Bioethics from Midwestern University

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