Health Information Management

Vendor responsible for exposing PHI of Ohio healthcare system patients

HIM-HIPAA Insider, November 25, 2013

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A vendor employee is responsible for the theft of a hard drive exposed the PHI of 7,170 patients at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Fox 8 Cleveland reported on its website.

A third-party vendor was backing up University Hospitals’ data on hard drives while upgrading the academic medical center’s computers, according to the article. The hard drive was stolen from a vehicle owned by an employee of the vendor.

Information on the hard drive includes patient names, addresses, dates of birth, medical record numbers, insurance information, and treatment information, according to Fox 8 Cleveland. Social Security numbers for some patients may also have been stored on the hard drive. University Hospitals will strengthen its device security policies and encrypt its electronic devices, according to the article.

This article originally appeared on HCPro’s HIPAA Update blog. Stay up to date on all things HIPAA by signing up for e-mail updates from this blog.

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