Misdirected medical documents reveal patient privacy issue

If you’re going to misdirect a fax containing patient information, you probably would like to avoid misdirecting it to a news station.

WFAA reports:

Fax machines are an easy, reliable way to get documents from one place to another quickly. It’s one reason doctors’ offices use them so frequently when sharing patient information.

“There has to be communication between doctors, hospitals,” explains longtime internal medicine doctor, Dr. Elvin Adams.

What happens if doctors send those faxes to the wrong fax number?

It’s a question News 8 had to ask recently after we were on the receiving end of faxes, chock full of people’s personal information. Names, birth dates, social security numbers, medical histories, you name it– they were all coming through our newsroom fax machine.

And it wasn’t just one fax. By the time we started keeping track, we realized we’d received information on at least 28 patients from at least seven different doctors’ offices in the Fort Worth area.

Read more on WFAA.

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