Doctor and Two Former Hospital Employees Sentenced for HIPAA Violations
LITTLE ROCK—Jane W. Duke, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, along with Thomas J. Browne, Special-Agent-in-Charge of the Little Rock Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced today the sentencings of Dr. Jay Holland, of Little Rock, Arkansas; Sarah Elizabeth Miller, of England, Arkansas; and Candida Griffin, of Little Rock, Arkansas. United States Magistrate Judge Henry L. Jones, Jr. sentenced Holland to one year of probation, a $5,000 fine to be paid in 60 days, and 50 hours of community service educating professionals on HIPAA. Miller was sentenced to one year probation and a $2,500 fine payable in installments. Griffin was sentenced to one year probation and a $1,500 fine payable in installments.
Holland, Miller, and Griffin pleaded guilty on July 20, 2009 to misdemeanor violations of the health information privacy provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) based on their accessing a patient’s records without any legitimate purpose.
“We hope that today’s sentencings send the message that the HIPAA protections apply to every person in the community, regardless of their position or stature. Likewise, the penalties for violating HIPAA apply equally to every person with access to protected health information,” stated Duke.
To report a HIPAA violation, follow the instructions at the US Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights website: www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacyhowtofile.htm or call 214-767-4056, the regional office with oversight over violations occurring in Arkansas.
This case was investigated by the Little Rock Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura G. Hoey.