Notice Regarding Hospice Burglary and Patient Health Information Breach
Northwestern Memorial Hospital July 25, 2012
Accessible personal information on the devices could include: the patient’s personal demographics, including full name, address, date of birth and social security number; the patient’s medical treatment profile related to home hospice or former home health services, including diagnosis, acuity of symptoms, medications, treatment notes and advanced directives; and payor information, including the patient’s health insurance group and policy numbers
Letters have been sent to impacted patients or their families notifying them of this breach. We do not believe the personal information stored on the devices was the target of this theft, but we will continue to work closely with the Chicago Police Department to identify the thieves and locate the devices.
We are assisting those affected by providing a credit bureau monitoring service to catch irregularities that may signal identity theft. We recommend that individuals review their credit reports, explanation of benefits statements, and credit card, bank and other financial statements for any unauthorized activity. If individuals believe they have been the victim of identity theft or have reason to believe their personal information has been misused, they should immediately contact the Federal Trade Commission and/or the attorney general’s office in Illinois.
We regret and apologize for this incident and are taking decisive measures to mitigate the impact and prevent future breaches. For example, we are reviewing the procedures that resulted in the process failure and limiting the number of patient records stored on laptop and tablet computers.
We appreciate the trust that our patients and their families place in Northwestern Memorial Hospital and are committed to resolving this matter and assisting patients who have been affected. Anyone with questions or anyone who believes they may be affected and has not received a notification letter can call 855.755.8480 and use the reference number 6963071312.