Can a retired nurse look up my husband and my children's medical records freely?
My husband has a son from a previous relationship. My husband's ex mother in law is constantly checking our medical records online. My husband told me that she has always been able to do this even after she retired (as a school district nurse). Is she allowed to do that? Is that actually legal?
She has mostly been looking up my son's records who is not related to her or her daughter whatsoever. It bothers me because, well, that should be private. I know this because of comments my husband's ex has made about my son's insurance. (Her son is not on our insurance)
How do I go about reporting her? Can I even report it?
- 2 months agoFavourite answer
It is certainly illegal to access anyone's medical record without authorization. HIPAA laws are very stringent and carry huge civil and monitory penalties for violating them. I work as a medical technologist in a hospital laboratory and I'm not even allowed to look up my own lab results, unless I'm doing the test myself, without going through the proper channels and procedures. Those of us in health care are only allowed access to patient's records on a need to know basis only to perform specific functions related to our job. You can report this to the entity she is getting the information from. They are required by law to investigate the claim and take appropriate action because that entity is required to enact safeguards to protect health information and they can get into a lot of trouble for not taking action. The individual as well as the entity they work for, or they're getting access to records from, can be liable in a law suit. As the administrative director of the lab I work in I had someone call me one day and tell me that someone had gotten their lab results without their permission. That person in question was an employee from another department and I had to report it. That person was terminated. If who you report it to doesn't take appropriate action then you can report it to Health and Human Services. I believe someone already posted a link on that. Ultimately you could get an attorney who is familiar with HIPAA laws to look into your case. It sounds like you have a solid case. The penalties will depend on the extent and intent of violation and the amount of harm it caused.
- EdnaLv 71 month ago
If she's a retired professional nurse, she now has no way of looking up your husband's or your children's medical records online. If she's retired, her password that would enable her to to look up your medical records online was cancelled when she retired.
A school district nurse NEVER has the authorization that's necessary for her to look up anyone's medical records online. School district nurses are not usually licensed professional nurses. They're just someone the school district has hired to act as a 'nurse' in a school setting.
- 2 months ago
Contact the school district and force the IT guys to remove her access to the database. You might be able to force a civil lawsuit against her and the school district but good luck getting paid. (Offer a lowball figure and they might just settle.) While there is no monetary loss, hearing info through a third party shows she not only has access but is sharing that info with others.
- 2 months ago
Totally Illegal. I wouldn't know who to call to bust her though.
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- MarcLv 72 months ago
Are you in the US? If so, this is highly illegal and a violation of HIPAA. You can report it to health and human services at HHS.gov.
As a retired nurse she should know this. You should let her know that you are aware that she is in violation of HIPAA and you are going to report her activity to HHS if it continues. The fines and penalties for violating HIPAA are severe in both financial and penal. She could be fined hundres of thousands of dollars and sent to prison.
Here is a link
- TavyLv 72 months ago
Illegal in the U.K. you need to report her.
- Barkley HoundLv 72 months ago
Looks like her access to the records was never cancelled when she left her job. It is highly illegal and she can go to jail for that. It is up to you if you want to report it.
- Jimmy CLv 72 months ago
What she is doing is illegal.
- Ding DongLv 62 months ago
I don't think it's illegal but it would be a disciplinary matter, they aren't allowed to do that for selfish reasons. There have been cases of police officers in the UK searching the database about potential dates and they lost their jobs, I imagine the same would be applicable to nurses. You go to the authority they work for with your evidence but they often ignore complaints.