Healthcare News & Insights

Patient says ‘leaked’ medical info ruined her life

A lawsuit claims a hospital violated a patient’s privacy after faxing medical records she requested to her employer.

Kimberly White, of Middleborough, Massachusetts is suing Tufts Medical Center and her primary care doctor for violating her privacy rights over a disability form gone astray. She’s seeking punitive damages in the alleged breach which she claims has stalled her career, aggravated her medical issues and caused extreme emotional distress.

The debacle began last winter, when White, recovering from a hysterectomy, asked her doctor to send a medical form related to her disability claim to White’s employer. According to White’s suit, four pages of her medical records were incorrectly sent to a shared fax machine at her company, where they were read by two of her co-workers.

White says her embarrassment is so great that she can no longer work for the company, telling the Boston Globe, “I can’t go back there…. I couldn’t live with knowing what these people knew about me.”

Tufts hasn’t responded to the lawsuit so far, but a spokesperson says the hospital did nothing wrong: “We firmly believe we responded to the patient’s request appropriately.”

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