By Marshall Allen
The Las Vegas Sun
Nov. 21, 2009
The FBI said Friday it may investigate a breach of patient privacy laws
at University Medical Center, where hospital officials are reeling with
the realization that at least one of their employees has leaked
confidential names, birth dates and Social Security numbers.
UMC officials spent Friday determining how they would respond to the
Sun's report that protected patient information allegedly has been sold
so ambulance-chasing attorneys can harvest clients.
FBI Special Agent Joseph Dickey said the agency met with officials of
the county owned hospital and has begun "evaluating" the unauthorized
release of confidential patient records.
Dickey said he could not confirm whether the FBI had officially opened
an investigation. The matter appears to violate the federal Health
Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, better known as HIPAA, a
federal law that guards patient privacy.
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