Nebraska-based Wedgewood Legacy Medical notifies more than 2,000 patients

Missing thumb drive begets HIPAA breach

By Erin McCann
10:41 AM
The protected health information of more than 2,000 patients has been compromised after a computer chip at a Lincoln, Neb.-based medical practice was declared lost. 
Officials at Wedgewood Legacy Medical, the practice of James Fosnaugh, MD, have mailed notification letters to 2,125 patients involved in the HIPAA breach. The computer chip that went missing, allegedly from Fosnaugh's thumb drive lanyard, contained patient names, birth dates, phone numbers, addresses and medical record information, according to a report by the Lincoln Journal Star
"Although we believe that it is highly unlikely that this computer chip has or will be found by someone who can extract the information from it, we cannot be 100 percent sure, thus we need to timely notify our patients of this event," according to a Wedgewood press release.
Seven HIPAA-covered entities in Nebraska have reported breaches — involving more than 9,000 patients — to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services since the August 2008 Breach Notification Rule.