California Issues More Fines for Privacy Breaches
The California Department of Public Health has issued its second set of fines to hospitals for privacy breach violations since the state passed groundbreaking legislation in 2008 to protect the confidentiality of medical records.
Five California hospitals were fined a total of $675,000 for failing to prevent the unauthorized access of patient medical information, according to a CDHP press release issued June 10. In total, 32 employees were implicated in six separate incidents that involved 245 patients.
Legislation passed in 2008 requires California healthcare facilities to submit breach notifications to CDPH, which can investigate and fine facilities up to $250,000 per reported event. In early 2010, a Journal of AHIMA article reported that CDHP received nearly 2,500 breach notifications during 2009, the first full year of the law’s enforcement.