Using Community Referral Technology Platforms to Safely Connect Health Center Patients with Community-based Domestic Violence Services

This memo provides recommendations for health center (HC) staff as they implement, tailor, and use electronic tools to connect their patients to community-based domestic violence (DV) and human trafficking (HT) services, including how to protect patient/survivor confidentiality. HCs increasingly play an important role in addressing the health-related social needs of their patients, including housing, food insecurity, and domestic violence. Today, referrals are often facilitated through online platforms, sometimes known as community referral networks or community referral technology platforms, to assist providers in connecting patients with necessary services and providing a mechanism for follow-up. However, concerns about privacy and confidentiality exist, particularly regarding sensitive health information such as experiences of violence. This memo addresses key questions and considerations for HC staff, emphasizing survivors’ rights and control over their health information.

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