DSHS is the public health and mental health services agency for the state of Texas. DSHS provides direct services to individuals and provides policy and direction for the public health and safety of all individuals within the state. DSHS also functions as a consumer and environmental health and health facility oversight, regulatory and licensing agency.
DSHS is declared as a 'hybrid entity' under HIPAA - meaning some of the programs and functions are covered entities as defined in the HIPAA regulations with most being not covered.
DSHS developed the information on this website for its internal use. One of the purposes was to determine which functions or programs within the department are HIPAA covered entities, and to ensure that these programs and functions will comply with the standards adopted to implement HIPAA. Another was to ensure that DSHS would continue to carry out its essential public health, mental health, regulatory, oversight, licensing and other governmental functions and remain accountable to the policymakers and individual citizens of the state.
State agencies are created by statute and carry out the functions and duties specifically assigned or falling within the scope of their enabling legislation. For this reason no two agencies will be alike in function or structure. The analysis and conclusions contained on this website applied the law to DSHS (Legacy TDH) based on the organization and the law as they both existed at the time. The content of this website should not be assumed to apply to any other person or entity.
Others should not rely upon the information and conclusions on this web site for uses beyond the limited purpose for which it was developed.