Legal Barriers

A project of the George Washington University’s Hirsh Health Law and Policy Program, Legal Barriers creates resources for legal analysis to address a range of legal matters related to value-based purchasing, health information, and health-system reform aimed at quality, efficiency and information transparency.

Its website, Health Information and the Law (, is designed to serve as a practical online resource about federal and state laws governing access, use, release, and publication of health information. Constantly updated, the site addresses the current legal and regulatory framework of health information law and changes in the legal and policy landscape impacting health information law and its implementation with commentary and key documents.

Contact Legal Barriers

Lara Cartwright-Smith, JD, MPH
Project Director

(202) 994-8641

A patient talks with a doctor in an examination room.

Data Collection and Use in the New Health Insurance Marketplaces

This brief by Health Information and the Law discusses the certification and accreditation requirements for ensuring the quality and value of health insurance plans sold in the new marketplaces created under the Affordable Care Act.

Read the brief
The nurses station in the John Theurer Cancer Center.

New Product Series: Fast Facts and Myth Busters

Two new product series introduced by Health Information & the Law, Fast Facts and Myth Busters, deliver quick, easily digestible, and shareable content about federal and state laws and regulations that govern access, use, release, and publication of health information.

Read the Fast Facts and Myth Busters
A resident confers with colleagues.

Expanding Patient Protections and Penalties: HIPAA’s New Rules

Legal Barriers' project Health Information & the Law developed an analytical brief detailing key changes to the federal rule implementing modifications to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The long-awaited final rule strengthens the privacy and security requirements related to the use and disclosure of patient health information, including new enforcement protocols and increased penalties.

Learn more