It is the policy of Continuing Nursing Education at the University of Washington School of Nursing (UWCNE) to protect the privacy of patients whenever their identity is not needed for the purpose for which information is being used or disclosed. Information is considered individually de-identified if it: 1) does not identify the individual and 2) does not contain information that could be used to identify the individual, including Information about relatives, employers or household members associated with a patient.

As a UWCNE participant, you are responsible for maintaining the security and confidentiality of protected health information (PHI) when completing assignments. De-identified information is information that excludes the following eighteen (18) specific identifiers and any other information that could be used alone or in combination to identify an individual.


Eighteen (18) protected health information identifiers:

  1. Names
  2. Geographic identifiers: all subdivisions smaller than state including:
    • Street Address
    • City
    • County
    • Precinct
    • Zip code and equivalent geo code
  3. Dates: All elements (except year) for dates that are directly related to an individual, including dates of:
    • Birth
    • Admission
    • Discharge
    • Death
    • And all ages or elements of dates for patients over 89.
  4. Phone numbers
  5. Fax numbers
  6. E-mail addresses
  7. Social security numbers
  8. Medical record numbers
  9. Health plan beneficiary numbers
  10. Account numbers
  11. Certificate or license numbers
  12. Vehicle identifiers including license plates
  13. Device identifiers and serial numbers
  14. URLs
  15. Internet Protocol (IP) addresses
  16. Biometric identifiers
  17. Face photographic images
  18. Any other unique identifier


*Adapted from 102.G4 Protected Health Information. (2018). Retrieved August 17, 2018 from