PA: Software firm, health care provider accuse each other of theft

Nicholas Malfitano reports on a lawsuit in which a healthcare provider, Post Acute Medical, LLC (PAM), accuses the former owner and operator of its computerized records database, Christopher LeBlanc and Meridian Hospital Systems Corporation of Dallas, Texas, of illegally retaining its confidential patient data.

The suit was filed in federal court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania on July 2.

For its part, LeBlanc and MHSC filed suit in Texas claiming that they are the victims of data theft. Malfitano explains:

Meridian’s Texas lawsuit accuses PAM of stealing its own software to provide it to competitor KMG and levies claims of trade secret misappropriation, breach of contract, tortious interference with contract, conspiracy to misappropriate trade secrets, unfair competition, trademark dilution under Texas common law, quantum meruit and promissory estoppel for those alleged acts. In addition to the temporary restraining order enjoining PAM, it also seeks extensive financial damages and monthly royalty payments of $59,300.

Read more on Pennsylvania Record.

This is not the first time we’ve seen litigation by an entity suing their former contractor for return of data and the contractor or or other party counter-suing, but let’s remember that patient records are involved here.  This contractor may have ultimately shot themselves in the foot, as why should any HIPAA-covered entity ever trust them again with access to ePHI if they cannot be counted on to return it at the end of any contract?  Our medical records should not be bargaining chips.

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