Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at

By Donna Loyle New federal regulations will impact the marketing practices of healthcare organizations such as health insurers, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, pharmacies and others. Final modifications to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), released in August and that go into effect April 14, 2003, further limit the use of patients' personal health information (PHI) in promotional campaigns. PHI includes, among other data, a patient's name, address, diagnosis, tests undergone and test results. Beginning in April, covered entities—which include healthcare providers, health plans and healthcare clearinghouses—must obtain a patient's prior written authorization to use the consumer's PHI for marketing purposes. "The final HIPAA

By Denny Hatch Oct. 4, 1957, is etched in my memory almost as clearly as the day Kennedy was shot. That October day, the Russians launched sputnik, leaving the U.S. space program at the starting gate. I stood on Columbia University's main campus talking with fellow students while this satellite whizzed over our heads, all of us fully expecting Armageddon. During a speech in Poland the previous year, Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev said to the West, "We will be at your burial." During this period, American school children practiced regular air raid drills. Survivalists spent small fortunes outfitting backyard air raid shelters.

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