Examples of HIPAA Regulation Violations

••• doctor image by DXfoto.com from Fotolia.com

Internet

One type of HIPAA violation is the release of information on the Internet. This can be purposeful or accidental. There have been cases of persons releasing information on abortion patients' information on anti-abortion websites. One health care company released the email information of hundreds of their patients when a worker at the company sent a mass email reminding patients about their pill schedule.

Employees

Even the release of information to employees who do not have the direct need to access patients' medical files is a breach of HIPAA. One common example of a HIPAA violation is therapists not saving their files to a protected computer, allowing other employees access to personal information.

Employers

One violation of HIPAA regulations that seems to be more common is the extraneous release of information to employers. Often, employers receive information about their employees who are making disability claims or even minor insurance claims. Sometimes insurance companies will release too much information. This release of information can negatively affect the employee through workplace embarrassment, harassment or even firing.

Media

In more malicious violations of HIPAA security regulations, doctors and health care workers have released or even sold medical information to magazines, newspapers or news stations. Targets of this type of violation are most often celebrities --- politicians, movie stars or singers.

Security

Security is a major issue when it comes to HIPAA violations, and many violations of HIPAA are caused by negligence on the part of a health care employee. Sometimes computers are left open with files readily available to other employees; sometimes family members look at confidential files and release information maliciously.

References

About the Author

Donny Quinn has been writing professionally since 2002 and has been published on various websites. He writes technical manuals for a variety of companies, including restaurants, hotels and salons. Quinn is pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in English at Georgia State University.

Photo Credits