Patients upset over data breach at Tri-City Medical Center

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OCEANSIDE, Calif. – More than 6,000 patient's medical records at Tri-City Medical Center were taken from the hospital without authorization, according to a letter sent to patients.

Oceanside resident Sarah Grimmett has plenty to worry about with her daughter, Faith, whose heart condition requires several monthly visits to the hospital.

Grimmett was shocked to receive a letter from Tri-City Medical Center revealing her daughter's medical records were possibly compromised.

"I felt violated for my 4-year-old," said Grimmett. "It's quite scary because she's so young and identity theft is such a big thing right now."

Tri-City Medical Center

Tri-City Medical Center

According to the letter from Tri-City, a former employee wheeled out the records on a cart and took them home on August 8.

Grimmett said she had no idea what happened until she got her letter on August 26 -- nearly three weeks after the incident.

"I feel the minute they knew the information was taken from the hospital by the employee -- we should have been contacted," said Grimmett.

The hospital reported the records contained patients' names, dates of birth and diagnoses -- but no social security numbers or financial information.

The former employee turned the records over the Department of Public Health.

Fox 5 tried to contact Tri-City officials for an update on the investigation, but our calls were not returned Thursday.

4 comments

  • Michael Slavinski

    Honorable Board of Directors August 27, 2014
    Tri-City Healthcare District
    4002 Vista Way
    Oceanside, CA 92056

    Dear Honorable Board members,

    Please allow me to humbly thank you for your service and commitment to our community, I really appreciate it.
    Unfortunately I would like to voice my opinion on a very disturbing action taken by one of your volunteer committee members concerning the removal of confidential (patient records) information from Tri-City Healthcare District(TCHD).
    To go to the press in a stated effort to classify the staff at TCHD as “sloppy” in this situation is beyond normal political activity, why the perpetrator confided in a volunteer committee member as to the action of illegally removing confidential information from the TCHD is highly suspect.
    The hardworking professionals and volunteers at TCHD deserve better and to think that the above mentioned volunteer committee member my still have access to proprietary and confidential information concerning TCHD is alarming.
    In my humble opinion I would ask that the above mentioned committee volunteer be removed from the current Board committee position held and any further activities within TCHD and I strongly feel not to do so would put the entire TCHD at risk.
    Once again, thank you for all that you do for those that help others and feel free to enter my comments into the public record as public support for he removal of one of your volunteer committee members noted on your 8/28/14 agenda.

    Respectfully,

    Michael H. Slavinski

    cc Ashly Mcglone, UT San Diego

  • Charles Armbruster

    If the parent is so concerned with her daughter’s privacy, why at 47 seconds into the video you can see her entire home address?

  • Michael Slavinski

    The terminated employee that illegally removed the files, for some reason, has their identity protected in the press, hopefully Fox will invest the five minutes to check the police report for their identity and former position at Tri-City Healthcare District(TCHD).. Last time I heard, ignorance does not hold up in our legal system or even your common confidentiality agreement.
    Just after the individual that reported the incident to the press, also covered by a confidentiality agreement, was terminated from his volunteer position as a volunteer committee member on August 28, 2014, by action of the Board of Directors at TCHD, after pleading his case as a self proclaimed “whistleblower”, stood up, interrupted the meeting with the comment “I never touched the files”! This gentleman has never been identified as a candidate for Board of Directors of TCHD in the press.
    Things are going well at Tri-City, their documented quality ratings and quality awards are second to none in the country,they are profitable in the days of the Affordable Care Act, they do a lot for our community, to caricaturize their work as “sloppy” hurt a lot of hard working professionals and volunteers that populate Tri-City Healthcare District.
    It is easy to take “pot shots” at your community hospital, it is easy and seemingly fun for the local press, this piece is no exception, reporting like this is hardly a service to our community, the rest of the local press has dropped the issue like a “hot rock” as a un-corroborated story and should Fox5 choose not to do an in-depth story I would suggest you do the same.

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