A former University of Pittsburgh Medical Center patient information coordinator has been indicted by a federal grand jury over criminal violations of HIPAA Rules.
Linda Sue Kalina was charged in a six-count indictment that included wrongfully obtaining and disclosing the protected health information of 111 patients. Kalina, who was arrested following an FBI investigation, faces up to 11 years in jail and could be ordered to pay a fine of up to $350,000.
The Department of Justice is taking a hard line on individuals who violate HIPAA Rules and impermissibly access and disclose PHI. Several other cases this year have seen former healthcare workers indicted for criminal HIPAA violations, with three cases resulting in imprisonment.
In June 2018, a former employee of the Veteran Affairs Medical Center in Long Beach, California was sentenced to serve 3 years in jail for the theft of protected health information and identity theft. Law enforcement officers discovered the records of 1,030 patients in the employee’s home.
In April 2018, a former receptionist at a New York dental practice was sentenced to serve 2 to 6 years in jail for stealing the PHI of 650 patients and providing that information to two individuals who used the data to rack up huge debts in patients’ names.
In February, a former behavioural analyst at the Transformations Autism Treatment Center in Bartlett, Tennessee was sentenced to 30 days in jail, 3 years supervised release, and was ordered to pay $14,941.36 in restitution after downloading the PHI of 300 current and former patients onto his personal computer.
Discover more HIPAA news at Smart Training