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HIPAA Breach at AHMC Healthcare Affects 729,000 Patients

October 24, 2013
by Rajiv Leventhal
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In one of the biggest Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) breaches ever reported, approximately 729,000 patients’ data has been compromised following the theft of two laptops from an office at the Alhambra, Calif.-based AHMC Healthcare Inc on Oct. 12.

The laptops contained data from patients treated at the following six AHMC hospitals: Garfield Medical Center, Monterey Park Hospital, Greater El Monte Community Hospital, Whittier Hospital Medical Center, San Gabriel Valley Medical Center and Anaheim Regional Medical Center, according to a statement from the healthcare group.  

 Although the campus where the office is located is gated and patrolled by security, the thief broke into a video-monitored 6th floor office and stole two password-protected laptops, AHMC officials said. Video evidence showed that the theft took place on Saturday, Oct. 12.

The protected health information contained in the laptops includes patient names, Medicare/insurance identification numbers, diagnosis/procedure codes, and insurance/patient payments. At this time, AHMC Healthcare Inc. says it has no evidence that the information has been accessed or used in any manner, although that cannot be ruled out.

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