NU Online News Service, April 2, 2003, 11:06 a.m. EST – Fewer than 46% of U.S. residents say they are familiar with the new federal health privacy regulations, according to a new survey by APCO Insight, Washington.

The researchers who conducted the survey, which was sponsored by Miller & Chevalier Chartered, Washington, a law firm, found that 73% of the 1,078 adults interviewed in early March had not yet received any notices about the new regulations.

The regulations, which were developed to implement the privacy provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, require health plans, employers and other organizations to protect the privacy of personal health information.

Forty-nine percent of the survey participants who had a master’s degree or other postgraduate degree had heard of the privacy regulations but only 37% of the high school dropouts had heard of the regulations.