In yet another case of stolen patient data, a Kaiser Permanente employee has been fired and letters were sent to more than 15,000 patients in Northern California after an external drive with the patients' medical records was stolen from the employee's car last month.
While no social security or financial information was on the stolen drive, names, medical record numbers, telephone numbers and addresses for the patients all were compromised, reports the San Francisco Chronicle.
The employee--who reported the theft on Dec. 8, one week after it took place--had authorization to access the information, but "use of the device was unauthorized" according to Kristin Chambers, vice president in charge of compliance and privacy for Kaiser in Northern California. According to the Chronicle, while the device was not encrypted, some information was protected with a password.
To learn more:
- read this San Francisco Chronicle article