Community Memorial Hospital

Recent Update for United Healthcare fax breach

March 14th, 2014

Patient info was sent to the wrong recipient, Stephen Butler’s. A Portland, Oregon man received erroneous faxes containing protected health information (PHI) from Community Memorial Hospital patients. Fax was intended to be sent to United Healthcare, as Insurance Company but went to Butler instead.

Fax contained four patients birth dates, insurance identification numbers, and admission dates. Roper, the hospital believes that this was the only fax sent to wrong recipient. But hospital was unaware about the incident until it was contacted by the news agency. It is believed that error was mostly likely due to dialing of wrong number. United Healthcare has carried out his own investigations.

Roper St. Francis, the healthcare network released the statement,

Roper St. Francis is committed to protecting the privacy of patients. This week, Roper St. Francis leaders learned that on August 1, 2013, one fax intended for an insurance company was inadvertently sent to a wrong number. The information in the fax contained the names of four patients, their dates of birth, dates of admission, and insurance member ID numbers. Roper St. Francis leaders have personally apologized to the patients involved. The mission at Roper St. Francis is to heal all patients with compassion, faith and excellence, and this includes protecting their private information as well.

Organizations, especially corporate giants, have to have an information security policy in place that proves they have taken necessary steps and measures to safeguard the information they gathered. If these policies are not adhered to, the regulators may prosecute.

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Error in faxing causes united health care breach

March 2nd, 2014

 

A Portland, Oregon man received erroneous faxes containing Protected health Information (PHI) from Community Memorial Hospital patients. Patient info was sent to the wrong recipient, Stephen Butler’s.

Fax included information of patient names, dates of birth, patient ID numbers, admission dates, and discharge dates. Butler called the hospital to inform them about the error after tracing the number to Community Memorial Hospital in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin.

Investigation revealed that breach was caused by United Healthcare. Butler initially contacted one of the patients of the hospital. Froedtert Health, which runs Community Memorial Hospital, was alerted of the breach through a patient.

“She took my name and number, said she was very thankful that I called her, and she said she was going to talk to the hospital administration immediately,” Butler said referring to the patient. Butler claims he called the hospital a half dozen times over the past year and told them to stop sending faxes. But faxes were sent erroneously even after repeated requests. He finally started calling the patients and media after which faxes stopped.

United representative issued a statement, “We were alerted by Froedtert Health about this issue earlier today, and we are working closely with them to investigate and determine the facts. We take very seriously the privacy and personal information of our members.” It was not able to determine whether breach was a result of human error or a glitch in the system.

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Organizations, especially corporate giants, have to have an information security policy in place that proves they have taken necessary steps and measures to safeguard the information they gathered. If these policies are not adhered to, the regulators may prosecute.

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