At What Price Does a Hospital Get to Compromise Patient Privacy?

Kimberly White had a hysterectomy with a variety of attendant issues she thought were private matters between her and her health-care providers.

She says Tufts Medical Center is responsible for proving her wrong.

As reported in The Boston Globe, she sued the hospital and a primary care doctor for allegedly faxing sensitive medical history documents to a machine used by several of her co-workers.

Two of them, she said, read the records, causing her embarrassment sufficient enough to affect her daily life and her livelihood. As The Globe reported, “White said it exacerbated other medical issues and stalled her career. She has been out on disability for nearly all of the time since, she said.”

White said she had asked her doctor to fax a required form for her work disability claim to her employer. Instead, she said, four pages of her medical records were sent. “I feel like I might have walked in (the office) naked,” White said.

White’s personal records, she emphasizes, were delivered to people who know her. “I can’t go back there,” she told The Globe. “I am so embarrassed. … I couldn’t live with knowing what these people knew about me.”

The hospital has denied wrongdoing, and a spokeswoman said it takes patient privacy very seriously.

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