St. Vincent Loses Laptop Containing Patient Information

A laptop that was connected to an EEG machine used for diagnostic testing was detached and stolen from St. Vincent Hospital in Indianapolis.

St Vincent

Photo: robbiee-flickr

The laptop contained personal health information of patients, including names, the type of service they were receiving and their doctors‘ names, it did not contain social security numbers or financial information.

St. Vincent Hospital has told around 1,100 patients that a laptop containing some of their personal information was stolen almost two months ago.

“A laptop that was connected to an EEG machine (for recording electrical activity in the brain) used for diagnostic testing was detached and stolen,” said St. Vincent spokesman Johnny Smith.

He says it was taken sometime on December 22 from the neurodiagnostic department of the main St. Vincent Hospital campus in Indianapolis, a unit where doctors, patients and family members of patients can usually be found.

The laptop was password-protected, and Smith says while it contained personal health information of patients, including names, the type of service they were receiving and their doctors‘ names, it did not contain social security numbers or financial information.

While Smith says they are confident that no personal information has been misused, St. Vincent is still urging patients whose information was on the computer to get a free credit report check from the major credit bureaus. He says the hospital is also adding more encryption software to it‘s system.

“We are also enhancing our physical security measures and increasing medical device protection education among our associates and clinical staff as well.”

Letters were sent to patients within the past week.

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