Docs accused of using EHR to steal patients

Valley Children's Hospital in Madera, California, has filed a suit against three pediatric lung specialists, claiming they wrongfully accessed patient records in order to lure them away.

The lawsuit names John Moua, M.D., David Lee, M.D., Paul Do, M.D., and two medical groups--University Pediatric Specialists and Central California Faculty Medical Group.

Records of at least 164 patients were accessed by the doctors while they were working at Valley Children's, Michael Goldring, interim chief legal officer and administrative officer, told The Fresno Bee. He called the access "a significant data breach" and a HIPAA violation.

Moua left his Valley Children's practice in August for Community Regional Medical Center, according to the lawsuit. Do had applied to practice at Valley Children's in April but instead in August took a job at University Pediatric Specialists to also practice at Community Regional.

The lawsuit's allegations include "unauthorized computer access, misappropriation of trade secrets, conversion and misappropriation of patients' personal health information ... to divert patients for their personal financial gain and commercial advantage."

Such instances add to growing legal concerns surrounding inappropriate access and use of such systems. 

That can include EHR fraud when it comes to billing as well as EHR-related medical malpractice problems.

Then there are situations that involve labor practices. To wit, in Missoula, Montana, Rocky Mountain Eye Center is fighting a ruling that terminating an employee for improper access to its electronic health record is an unfair labor practice under the National Labor Relations Act.

To learn more:
- here's the article
- read the lawsuit

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