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It’s expected that healthcare providers will ordinarily conduct telehealth in private settings, such as a doctor in a clinic or office connecting to a patient who is at home or another clinic. Providers should always use private locations, and patients should not receive telehealth services in public or semi-public settings, absent patient consent or exigent circumstances.  

If telehealth cannot be provided in a private setting, covered healthcare providers should continue to implement reasonable HIPAA safeguards to limit incidental uses or disclosures of protected health information (PHI). Such reasonable precautions could include using lowered voices, not using the speakerphone, or recommending that the patient move to a reasonable distance from others when discussing PHI.