On August 20, 2018, Legacy Health submitted a HIPAA Email Breach to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).
Based in Portland, Oregon, Legacy Health’s email breach affected 38,000 individuals’ protected health information.
The Portland-based nonprofit health system said someone accessed multiple employees’ email accounts, some of which contained patient information. The breach was not discovered until June 21 and not publicly disclosed until Monday, as the health moved to establish a hotline and contact affected patients.
“We’ve been moving at as fast a pace as we can to be thorough and clear,” said Kelly Love, a Legacy spokeswoman.
The information potentially exposed includes patients’ names, dates of birth, health insurance information, billing information, medical information regarding care they received at Legacy, social security numbers and driver’s license information.
Legacy, which operates six hospitals and 70 clinics in Oregon and southwest Washington, said it has hired a firm to investigate the breach and will send notification letters to patients whose information might have been disclosed. Not all of the system’s patients are affected by the breach.
It also said it’s implementing new policies to prevent future breaches, but did not elaborate.
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.