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New Data Disposal Law in Delaware Requires Action by Impacted Businesses

While the federal government continues its inaction on data security bills pending in Congress, some U.S. states have been busy at work on this issue over the summer. A new Delaware law H.B. 295, signed into law on July 1,...more

Don’t Put Off That New HIPAA Business Associate Agreement: September 23, 2014 Deadline Looms

It’s been a while, but we have another HIPAA deadline just around the corner: September 23, 2014. September 23, 2014 is the date by which all HIPAA business associate agreements need to be in compliance with the...more

HIPAA For Lawyers And Law Firms: What you need to know to prevent your law firm from paying MILLION$

For years now lawyers and law firms providing professional services to health care providers or health insurance plans should have had in place essential safeguards to meet the responsibilities and requirements as business...more

Deadline For Business Associate Agreement And Data Use Agreement Compliance Is September 22, 2014

September 22, 2014 is the deadline to have all business associate and data use agreements updated to conform to the new requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) Final Omnibus...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

FBI Warning to Health Care Sector Holds True

In April of this year, the FBI issued a Private Industry Notification (PIN) to the health care industry warning of the “likely increase [in] cyber intrusions against health care systems.” In the same month, and into June of...more

Massive Data Breach Affects 4.5 Million Patients in 29 States

Community Health Systems, Inc. (the “Company”), one of the largest hospital organizations in the country, announced via a public filing (Form 8K) made yesterday with the Securities and Exchange Commission (“Report”) that the...more

Hospital Operator Reports 4.5 Million Patients’ Data Stolen in Cyberattack

The Tennessee-based acute-care hospital chain Community Health Systems, Inc. (CHS), reported on August 18 that information on approximately 4.5 million patients was stolen from the company. CHS is one of the largest hospital...more

4.5 Million Patients’ Information Stolen by Hackers

Community Health Systems Inc. (“CHS”), a Tennessee-based hospital provider, has reported it was the target of data hackers who were able to obtain identification information belonging to approximately 4.5 million CHS...more

Community Health Systems' HIPAA Breach: Significant Lessons for Health Care and Non-Health Care Companies

On August 18, 2014, Community Health Systems, Inc. (CHS) publicly confirmed, in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (CHS filing), that its computer network was attacked between April and June 2014 by hackers...more

Chinese Hackers Infiltrate Health System Network – Information of 4.5 Million Individuals Stolen

Community Health Systems, Inc. (“CHS”) reported yesterday that the information of approximately 4.5 million individuals has been affected by a Chinese cyber-attack. CHS and its affiliates own and operate 206 hospitals in 29...more

Hospital Network Reports Large HIPAA Breach

Community Health Systems announced yesterday, August 18th, that hackers broke into its computers and stole data on 4.5 million patients. ...more

OIG Report Takes Issue With Oversight of Security Controls for Electronic Health Records

HHS Office of Inspector General (OIG) recently released a report concluding that the entity responsible for overseeing the testing and certification process for electronic health records (EHRs) did not fully ensure that...more

Massachusetts Enforces Data Security Regulations Against Out-of-State Entity

On July 23, 2014, the Massachusetts Attorney General announced a consent judgment with an out-of-state Rhode Island hospital, Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island (“WIH” or the “Hospital”), resolving a lawsuit against WIH...more

Privacy Tuesday – August 2014

We are just two Mondays away from Labor Day, the traditional end of summer in the United States. Here are some privacy tidbits to get your week started. See especially Jake Romero’s piece on the new Delaware data...more

Federal Prosecutors Bring Criminal Charges against Individual for Alleged HIPAA Violation

Federal prosecutors in the Eastern District of Texas recently brought criminal charges under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPAA”) against a former East Texas hospital employee. The former...more

OIG Finds Privacy and Security Risks with ONC EHR Certification Process

It is ironic to learn the Office of Inspector General (OIG) believes the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) essentially has an insufficient compliance program to maintain the privacy...more

Privacy Update: In For A Penny, In For A Pound

A Warning for Health Service Providers - The Australian Privacy Commissioner has found that a suburban Melbourne medical practice has breached the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) by failing to take reasonable steps to secure...more

Rhode Island Hospital’s Breach of Health Information Leads to Settlement with Massachusetts Attorney General

On July 23, 2014, the Massachusetts attorney general announced a settlement with Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island (WIH) over the loss of unencrypted backup tapes. WIH agreed to pay $150,000 and undertake numerous...more

The Affordable Care Act—Countdown to Compliance for Employers, Week 21: Self-Funded Group Health Plans, the Affordable Care Act...

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) ushered in broad national standards aimed at improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the U.S. health care system. Referred to generically as...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

WEBINAR: Preparing for the HITECH September Deadline - Tips for Negotiating Effective Business Associate Agreements under HIPAA

Business Associate Agreements (BAAs), in the current regulatory and technological environment, require careful review and negotiation of the implementation of the regulatory requirements. In meeting the September 23, 2014...more

Recent OCR Reports Illustrate Past and Future Compliance and Enforcement Efforts

Daily news stories about data breaches and enforcement actions seem to be the new norm, so it’s no surprise that people may start to believe that hackers have won the war and that no personal health information is safe. But...more

California Court of Appeal Rules Damages Are Unavailable To Plaintiff Patients Where Patient Information On Stolen Computer Was...

Until last week, Sutter Health was looking at a potential jury verdict in excess of $4 billion against several of its affiliated hospitals in a class action suit filed under the California Medical Information Act, California...more

OCR to Begin Phase 2 of HIPAA Audit Program

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights (OCR) will soon begin a second phase of audits (Phase 2 Audits) of compliance with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA)...more

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