News Briefs Archive

Healthcare Data Breaches Reach Record High in April

May 29, 2019

Providers, health plans and their business associates reported 44 data breaches to the federal government last month, according to reporting by Jessica Kim Cohen in Modern Healthcare.

That’s the highest number of healthcare breaches reported in a single month since HHS’ Office for Civil Rights began maintaining its online database of healthcare breaches in 2010, surpassing the previous record—exactly one year ago, April 2018—when healthcare groups reported 42 breaches to the agency.

In spite of the record number of incidents reported last month, April experienced a down-tick in the number of people who had data exposed. Healthcare breaches reported in April compromised data from 686,953 people, down 29 percent from the 963,794 people affected by breaches reported in March. Two breaches reported in April each exposed data on more than 100,000 people.

The largest breach, which compromised data on up to 206,695 people, involved a ransomware attack at Doctors’ Management Service, a company that provides medical billing services to hospitals and physician practices. Doctors’ Management Service reported the data breach to the OCR on April 22, two years after the incident began.

The company said patients seen at 38 of its client locations may have had information comprised in the data breach.

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