[ISN] EHR audit catches snooping employee

http://www.healthcareitnews.com/news/ehr-audit-catches-snooping-employee By Erin McCann Managing Editor Healthcare IT News January 26, 2015 Electronic health records not only enable faster access to real-time patient data; they also make it a heck of a lot easier to catch snooping employees who inappropriately view patients’ confidential information, as one California hospital has observed this past week. Officials at the 785-bed California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco – part of Sutter Health system – notified a total of 844 patients Jan. 23 after discovering a pharmacist employee had been inappropriately snooping on patients’ medical data for an entire year. The incident was discovered after the hospital conducted an EHR audit back in October 2014, when it was first discovered only 14 individuals had had their PHI compromised. Following an “expanded investigation,” hospital officials discovered the HIPAA breach was significantly larger than they had originally found, with 844 additional patients being identified as having there information inappropriately accessed. The staff member, whose employment has since been terminated, snooped on patient records from October 2013 to October 2014, including patient demographics, clinical diagnoses, prescription data and clinical notes. […]