Lawsuit against Eisenhower Medical Center dismissed on appeal

There’s an update to a lawsuit that followed a breach involving a computer stolen from Eisenhower Medical Center in 2011. As reported at the time, the types of unencrypted patient information on the computer was confined to an electronic index patient names, ages, dates of birth, the last four digits of the Social Security numbers and the hospital’s Medical Record Numbers (MRNs).

Today, Bill Kenealy reports that lawsuit filed by some patients has been dismissed by a California appeals court:

A California appeals court has ruled in favor of a hospital that was sued after a computer containing an index of over 500,000 patients’ names and personal information was stolen, saying those profiles were not connected to medical histories.

The 4th Appellate District Division 2 of the Court of Appeal of the State of California on Wednesday overturned a ruling from Judge Harold W. Hopp of the Superior Court of Riverside County that dismissed a request for summary judgment from the Eisenhower Medical Center of Rancho Mirage, California.

The plaintiffs, including Carmen Malanche, originally filed a putative class action against Eisenhower Medical Center for breach of patient confidentiality under California’s Confidentiality of Medical Information Act.

In overturning the lower court’s ruling, the Court of Appeal stated that the hospital was not liable under the CMIA.

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