Nursing homes, like all other medical facilities, must remain compliant with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). This act protects the privacy of patients receiving care in a medical facility. Unfortunately, some facilities fail to protect their residents and must face the consequences.
Storing patient records on an iPhone is never a good idea. A recent case involving a stolen iPhone containing the records of more than 400 nursing home patients is going to cost the owner of several facilities $650,000.
The theft, which took place in February 2014, occurred at a facility under the direction of Catholic Health Care Services (CCHS) of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. The theft led to an investigation by the Health and Human Services Office of Civil Rights. CCHS was later found to have violated HIPAA’s security rule by storing patient records on a mobile device.
The investigation also concluded that CCHS was failing to take appropriate measures to prevent the improper disclosure of patient records.
In addition to the settlement payment, CCHS must also undergo a two-year program designed to take corrective action. Under the program, CCHS must evaluate all of its electronic records in a risk analysis. CCHS will also have to provide documentation of steps being taken to reduce the risk of identity theft.
Following the theft, CCHS transferred ownership of its six nursing facilities to New York-based Center Management Group. CCHS continues to provide management and information technology services to the company.
If you or a loved one has suffered abuse or neglect while residing in a nursing facility, you may be entitled to compensation. Contact the law offices of Schenk Smith. Our experienced attorneys can help you get the compensation you deserve. Contact us today.