Articles Posted in Privacy Issues

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A medical doctor published an article in the Newsweek recently that reminds all patients that hospitals are not quite as safe as we suspect. The article is an excerpt from the doctor’s book: Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care.

The author notes that he had a wake-up call about the dangers of care when he was in medical school. He watched with dismay as an elderly patient of his died after a procedure that she did not need or want. The author explained that the drive for doctors to perform certain medical actions (in this case, surgery for ovarian cancer) was “like a train no one could stop.” This lead the medical team to understate the risks and overstate the benefits. During the biopsy before the procedure a needle accidentally punctured a blood vessel causing many different problems–including a six week hospital stay. She died not long after–spending most of her final weeks in the hospital undergoing blood transfusions, CAT scans, facing malnutrition, and more.

Keeping Med Mal Secret

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Blue Cross was fined $150,000 for improperly disclosing patients’ medical information to other insurance companies. According to Blue Cross, the disclosure was a printer error. Abuse of patient information has been noted. According to Judy Dugan who works for Consumer Watchdog, patient information has been held for ransom before.

For the full article, click here.

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A woman is suing a medical-services company for disclosing her personal information after undergoing an operation. Although privacy laws are supposed to keep personal information and medical conditions private, all of her information was published in an article. While HIPAA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) is supposed to protect patient rights, there have been issues all over the country, including in Chicago, Illinois where patient privacy rights have been violated. Many of the cases arising from the HIPAA violations have not even received any investigation and have been dropped and this continues to be an issue for many patients who feel there rights have been violated. For the full story click here.