Friday, March 18, 2005

Kaiser Permanente Files New Motions Against the Diva of Disgruntled Blogger

An article in today's San Jose Mercery News reports that Kaiser Permanente filed new motions in an existing lawsuit against a former employee, Elisa D. Cooper, aka the "Diva of Disgruntled" asserting claims based on invasion of privacy and breach of a confidentiality agreement.

This follows up the announcement by Kaiser last week that it was notifying 140 patients in California that personal information, including names, addresses, telephone numbers, medical record numbers and results of routine lab tests, had been posted on the Web. According to the article today:
Kaiser has since acknowledged that it constructed the unsecured technical Web site but said it id not know if patient information was included on it. Cooper said she tried to notify Kaiser about he breach only to be rebuffed, and she subsequently filed a Federal health privacy complaint with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which in turn contacted Oakland-based Kaiser.
Also, the article reports that the California Department of Managed Health Care (DMHC) is investigating both Ms. Cooper and the actions of Kaiser Permanente. The DMHC has also ordered Ms. Cooper to stop posting certian information to her blog.

For more details and some interesting commentary on this matter check out Matthew Holt's most recent post on The Health Care Blog. Also, for more information about Ms. Cooper's termination from Kaiser you can read her post titled "Details of My Termination from Kaiser." You can also see the nature of the complaint that Ms. Cooper filed with the Office of Civil Rights who are responsible for investigating potential violations under the Privacy Rules of the Health Insurance Portability & Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

Also check out the March 16, 2005 ComputerWorld article for coverage of this matter.

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