Last January, officials at a Floyd County hospice learned that a laptop containing the names, addresses, Social Security numbers, birth dates and medical diagnoses of 1,819 patients had been stolen from an employee’s car.
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In medical breaches involving 500 or more patients’ records, the health care entity that suffered the breach is required, within 60 days, to notify:
- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- The affected patients
- A local media outlet
In medical breaches of fewer than 500, the provider must notify:
- HHS/OCR within one year.
- Affected patients within 60 days.
Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
The Federal Trade Commission offers these tips to detecting whether you’re a victim of medical identity theft
- Read your medical and insurance statements regularly. They can provide warning signs.
- Make sure claims paid match the care delivered. If not, contact your health plan.
- Signs of medical identity theft include: bills for services not received, medical collection notices on your credit report that you don’t recognize, and a notice from your health plan saying you reached your benefit limit.
Source: Federal Trade Commission