[ Friday, October 12, 2012 ]


Not exactly HIPAA, but relevant for Arkansas: the Arkansas supreme court has ruled that an individual's claim for damages for the tort of "outrage," arising from problems for the plaintiff due to the defendant improperly releasing the plaintiff's PHI, does not go away just because the individual died.  Since this is Arkansas, you might have surmised that this related to Anne Pressly, the Little Rock anchorwoman who was raped and murdered.  A doctor and two nurses accessed her medical records, despite the fact that they were not assigned to her care; those individuals and the hospital were found guilty of violating HIPAA, and the doctor and nurses had to do community service. 

Pressly's executrix sued the hospital and the 3 individuals for invasion of privacy and "outrage."  The court did rule that the invasion of privacy claim does expire at the patient's death, but the outrage claim may still be pursued by the estate. 

The story via BNA is here (subscription requried).

Jeff [10:17 PM]

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