Civil Remedies Privacy Health

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A Year in Review: Key HIPAA Settlement Agreements by HHS’s Office for Civil Rights

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights had another busy year in 2014. More resolution agreements were signed by HHS and Covered Entities than in the previous year, and several Covered...more

Horizon Avoids Data Breach Class Action For Lack Of Standing

On March 31, 2015, a New Jersey federal judge dismissed a class action lawsuit against Horizon Healthcare Services Inc. alleging the company failed to protect the personal information of thousands of insurance network members...more

Walgreen Settles Prescription Robocall Suit for $11 million

Walgreen Co. this week settled a putative class action law suit alleging that it violated the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) for $11 million. The plaintiffs alleged that Walgreen violated TCPA when it placed...more

Court Dismisses Data Breach Class Complaint For Lack Of Standing

On February 11, 2015, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas held that a plaintiff lacked standing to pursue claims for alleged violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq....more

HIPAA Violation — Pharmacy Held Liable for Employee’s Misdeeds

Recently, the Indiana Court of Appeals let stand a $1.4 million jury verdict against a national pharmacy chain for its employee pharmacist’s unauthorized disclosure of a customer’s confidential medical records.  Given the...more

Grand Theft PHI – Are Vendors Putting You at Risk for a HIPAA Breach?

Your vendor’s employee goes home after a long day of collecting wellness questionnaires and biometric screening results only to wake up the next day to discover that her car has been stolen from her driveway. As you can...more

Blog: Beth Israel To Pay $100,000 for Massachusetts Health Information Breach

Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (Beth Israel) reached a settlement with the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office for a data breach in which a physically unsecured laptop was stolen containing personal and protected...more

Pharmacy Liable for Employee’s Illegal Peek at Customer Prescription Records

In what’s being touted as a national precedent, the Indiana Court of Appeals upheld a $1.4 million trial court verdict for a Walgreens customer whose prescription information was leaked by a pharmacist to a third party. This...more

Recent Trends in HIPAA Liability

Since the passage of the 2013 HIPAA Omnibus Rule, there has been a substantial increase in HIPAA enforcement actions brought by the Department of Health and Human Services, including an increase in so-called “high-impact...more

California Appellate Court Limits Liability under California’s Medical Confidentiality Act for Disclosure of Medical Information

In what should be considered a win for the defense, the California Third Appellate Court recently overturned the lower court’s denial of a motion to dismiss a class action lawsuit seeking $4 billion in damages under...more

California Court Dismisses CMIA Claim Based on Possession of Stolen Medical Data

A health organization narrowly averted paying a potential $4 billion in damages under the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act (CMIA) for losing the medical records of more than 4 million patients. Plaintiffs...more

News from the Health Law Gurus™

Chinese Hackers Infiltrate Health System Network Affecting 4.5 Million Individuals – Community Health Systems, Inc. (“CHS”) reported this week that the information of approximately 4.5 million individuals has been affected by...more

No Harm, No Foul – Appellate Court Finds No CMIA Claim Without Actual Injury

California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act, Cal. Civ. Code § 56 et seq. (“CMIA”), provides that an individual may recover $1,000 nominal damages (plus actual damages if any) based on the negligent release of...more

News from the Health Law Gurus™

Former Walmart Exec to Help Manage HHS — Leslie Dach, former Executive Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Walmart, will assume the role of Senior Counsel of the HHS, according to a press release on Wednesday. ...more

Even in Privacy Cases, Risk of Injury Does not Always Equal Injury

It’s an ancient conundrum; if a tree falls in the forest, and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound? Privacy litigation may well offer the closest jurisprudential equivalent; if data is stolen, but no one does...more

California Court Limits Liability for Loss of Certain Patient Information under CMIA

California appellate courts are clarifying potential liability under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act, Cal. Civ. Code § 56 et seq. (“CMIA”) of health care providers, health plans, pharmaceutical...more

Halifax Health Gets In More Hot Water

You probably didn’t think Florida’s Halifax Health could make its situation any worse. After all, only two months ago Halifax agreed to pay $85 million to settle just the first half of a Medicare fraud case. That still...more

HIPAA Complaint Seeks Class Action Status

A complaint filed in the Superior Court of California on March 14, 2014, requested certification as a class action and sought a wide variety of damages arising from a breach of personal information. Doe vs. Sutherland Health...more

No Harm, Still Foul? Florida Court Approves Data-Breach Class Action Settlement

Data-breach class action suits may have just gained significant traction. On Feb. 28, 2014, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida approved a first of its kind class action data breach settlement that...more

Calif. Case Limits Health Care Data Breach Claims

The California Court of Appeal recently limited plaintiffs’ ability to state a claim under the California Medical Information Act (CMIA), Cal. Civ. Code §§ 56 et seq., and their ability to get statutory damages under the act....more

Little Harm, Big Damages: AvMed Settlement Could Change the Landscape for Privacy Breach Class Actions

On October 21, Florida-based health insurer AvMed, Inc. (AvMed) settled a data breach class action lawsuit for $3 million, even though no plaintiffs in the class demonstrated that they had suffered identity theft or any other...more

HHS States That It Will Issue Guidance On HIPAA Regulation For Prescription Refill Reminders

On September 11, 2013, HHS stated in a joint motion filed in the case of Adheris, Inc. v. Sebelius, No. 1:13-cv-1342 (D.D.C.), that it plans to issue guidance on a HIPAA regulation related to prescription drug refill...more

OCR Settles with Shasta Regional Medical Center for $275,000

The HHS Office of Civil Rights (OCR) recently announced a $275,000 settlement with Shasta Regional Medical Center (SRMC) on the heels of an investigation triggered by a Los Angeles Times article indicating that senior...more

Physician Medicare Data: Has the Drought Ended?

After 34 years, a federal district court in Florida has overturned a 1979 injunction which prevented the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) from releasing to the public Medicare data related to physician billing...more

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Announces First HIPAA Breach Settlement Involving Fewer than 500 Patients

On January 2, 2013, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services ("HHS") settled its first case involving the unauthorized disclosure of the electronic protected health information ("ePHI") of fewer than 500 individuals....more

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