Members of Congress are officially on notice of a widespread security problem with medical record-keeping in the U.S. healthcare industry.
The Office for Civil Rights at HHS disclosed last week that more than 30,500 breaches of personal health information involving fewer than 500 records each were reported to the office between September 2009 and the end of 2010. Those small breaches affected a total of about 62,000 individuals.
The numbers were in one of two reports delivered to Congress on breaches of medical records, as well as enforcement of the privacy and security rules of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996. The reports came two days before it was reported that the names, diagnosis codes and other medical information of about 20,000 emergency department patients of Stanford Hospitals & Clinics were posted to the Web a year ago by a vendor's subcontractor.