Health Information Management Services (HIMS) - New York/New Jersey VA Health Care Network
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New York/New Jersey VA Health Care Network

 

Health Information Management Services (HIMS)

two doctors reviewing patient charts
Contents
HIMS Services
Release of Information
Retention of Patient Records
Frequently Asked Questions
Contact Information
Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I get a copy of my VA medical records?
  • Contact the Release of Information Clerk located within the Health Information Management Department.
  • Sign a consent form allowing us to copy and release your medical records.
  • Provide the complete and correct mailing address where you want your medical records mailed.
  • Provide the correct spelling of the person you want the records mailed to.
Or:
  • Mail or fax to us a letter with your name and social security number stating exactly what information you would like released. Include the name and address of the person you want the records released to.
2. What should I do if I’ve lost my DD214?

  • Write to:
    National Personnel Records Center
    9700 Page Blvd, Room 230
    St. Louis, MO 63132

  • Please include your name at the time of military service, your social security number, your service number, the approximate dates of your service and your branch of service.
  • You will need to allow a minimum of six weeks for processing any request for military records.
    Or

You can go online and print the Request Pertaining to Military Records form SF-180 ** . The website is www.archives.gov **

    Or

3. How do I get a copy of my military records?
  • A copy of your military information may be requested in writing to:
    National Personnel Records Center
    9700 Page Blvd, Room 230
    St. Louis, MO 63132
  • Please include your name at the time of military service, social security number, service number, the branch and approximate dates of military service.
4. How do I get a non-VA questionnaire completed by my VA doctor?
  • Bring the completed form to Release of Information and complete the appropriate consent form.
  • The Release of Information Clerk will forward your request to the appropriate medical professional for their completion.
  • The completed form will be mailed back to you.
5. How do I obtain copies of my retired records?
  • Requesting your retired records is the same process as requesting a copy of your medical records.
  • Once the records have been received, we will complete the request.
  • The request will be sent to the retirement center. It can take anywhere from two to six weeks to obtain records.

Frequently Asked Questions About Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

1. How can I make a FOIA request to VA — do I need to fill out any forms?

The VA requires that a FOIA request be in writing. The request must describe what records are being requested. Your request must state your willingness to pay applicable fees. Please provide a daytime telephone number in case we need to contact you. Write “FOIA” on the envelope. There are no special forms required for use in submitting a FOIA request.

2. Can I fax or email my request?

VA does not process FOIA requests submitted by email. Our regulations require the request to be in writing over the signature of the requester. Faxed requests are acceptable as long as they contain a copy of the requester’s signature.

3. What types of records can be obtained through FOIA requests?

Any record may be obtained. Any records requested under the PA must have written consent from the individual. If the individual is deceased, you must provide a copy of the death certificate. Please note that medical and beneficiary records are Privacy Act records and are exempt from release under the (b)(3) and (b)(6) FOIA exemption.

4. If I don’t agree, what are my rights?

If your request is denied or you do not agree with any decision regarding the release of records, you may appeal to DVA’s Office of General Counsel. You should include in your letter why you disagree. Your appeal should be submitted to:
Department of Veterans Affairs
Office of the General Counsel (024)
810 Vermont Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20420

5. How long does a requester have to wait for a reply from the VA?

It is the policy of Network 2 to acknowledge your request within 20 working days of our receipt. We are required to notify you within 20 working days as to whether the information you requested is available. The VA works on a first-in, first-out basis, so there may be other requests ahead of yours. Please note that the 20 working days starts when it is first received by the FOIA Officer.

** Link will take you to another government agency outside of the Department of Veterans Affairs Web site (VA). The link will open in a new window.