MGH HIPAA violation case
Jennifer Brummage Medical Law and Ethics
In the health care business, there are certain standards and laws that have been put in place to protect our patients and their personal health information. When a health care facility fails to protect their patient’s confidential information, the US Government may get involved and facilities may be forced to pay huge sums of money in fines, and risk damaging their reputation.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) was established in 1996. This Act was put into place in order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the health care system. The HIPAA law includes a Privacy …show more content…
MGH is one of the nation’s largest and oldest hospitals. The Hospital is highly regarded and respected, and many hospitals took notice when the investigation into possible HIPAA security law violations began. In addition to agreeing to pay the United States Government one million dollars, the hospital and the General Hospital Corporation agreed to sign a Resolution Agreement with the United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). The agreement required that the hospital develop and implement a comprehensive set of policies and procedures to safeguard the privacy of its patients.
In signing this resolution agreement, it was the HHS hope that other hospitals and clinics throughout the nation would recognize that the OCR is very serious about investigation every claim that is filed with them. The OCR wants other hospitals to see that if a violation has occurred and a patient’s privacy has been violated, there will be consequences. The OCR wanted to make an example out of Massachusetts General Hospital.
In addition to the fines and the signing of the resolution agreement, OCR and HHS asked MGH to enter into a Corrective Action Plan. The HHR wanted the hospital and its employees to not only be held responsible and made an example out of, they also wanted the hospital to raise the awareness of its employees. The Corrective Action Plan (CAP) was designed to develop and implement a comprehensive set of