On March 16, 2018, Primary Health Care, Inc. submitted a HIPAA Email Breach to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Located in Des Moines, Iowa, the Primary Health Care email breach affected 10,313 individuals’ protected health information.
Primary Health Care, Inc. is classified as a Healthcare Provider.
According to their press release:
“What Happened? On March 1, 2017, PHC discovered that the email accounts of four of its employees had been subject to unauthorized access on February 28, 2017. PHC immediately terminated the unauthorized access and began an investigation which included a review of the contents of the email account for protected information. A forensic investigator was hired to confirm the scope of the unauthorized access to the email accounts and the related Google drives. Unfortunately, PHC is unable to confirm what emails within the account, if any, were subject to unauthorized access. Therefore, the forensic investigator reviewed all four email accounts and Google drives to determine what protected health information they may have contained. Though it has no evidence that any emails were subject to unauthorized access, in an abundance of caution, PHC is providing notice to potentially affected individuals.
What Information Was Involved? The information related to patients located in one of the email accounts or Google drives and therefore potentially subject to unauthorized access includes a combination of patient name, phone number, Social Security number, driver’s license number, financial account number, credit/debit card number, date of service, diagnosis and treatment information, medical history, facility and provider visited, health insurance/payor information and, if applicable, Medicaid identification number. PHC currently has no evidence of any actual or attempted misuse of patient information as a result of this incident. “
HHS Wall of Shame
The HHS Wall of Shame is a website under the jurisdiction of HHS that lists all HIPAA breaches reported within the last 24 months. The Wall of Shame displays breaches that are currently under investigation by the Office for Civil Rights.
As part of section 13402(e)(4) of the HITECH Act, the HHS Secretary must post a list of breaches of unsecured protected health information affecting 500 or more individuals.
HIPAA Breach Report
The Paubox HIPAA Breach Report analyzes breaches that affected 500 or more individuals as reported in the HHS Wall of Shame.