Hospital Workers Suspended for Peeking at George Clooney's Medical Info - page 6

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  1. by   Marie_LPN, RN
    Quote from doe9181
    Aren't you allowed to look at your own records? I look at mine all the time when I have blood drawn or something like that. No one's ever said anything to me. I mean they are your own records after all.
    They may be your own records, but you're using work passcodes to access it, i.e. abuse of privilege.
  2. by   donsterRN
    Quote from Marie_LPN
    They may be your own records, but you're using work passcodes to access it, i.e. abuse of privilege.
    This is very true. We are not allowed to access our own records for that very reason.
  3. by   Aidaniel
    Sometimes we were starstrucked by the celebrities seeking medical help in the facilities we are working in that we tend to forget some legalities. Let us always be reminded by these legalities to protect the client, the institution/facilities and ourselves.
  4. by   EmmaG
    Quote from Don3218
    This is very true. We are not allowed to access our own records for that very reason.
    During a follow-up appointment after I was discharged, I got into a little argument with my doc who insisted an xray had shown ____. I knew better, because the consulting doc had shown me the report. Anyway, he kept insisting that I was mistaken. So that night, I looked up the results and AHA! I was right! I knew I didn't have ____! Couldn't wait to tell my doc...

    Guess who got called in to the manager's office the next week?



    I was damn lucky. I could have been fired.
  5. by   scooterRN52
    Quote from RNsRWe
    LOL....I'd be much more interested in a chat with him than looking at his CT results!
    I agree with you, who cares what is in his record. I think hippa gets a little unrealistic, they should realize that medical personel are reading his records and plenty of them including medical records. They put entire chart away ( hard copy )
    that is. Our hospital still has hard copies.:spin:
  6. by   twotrees2
    Quote from CindyMac58
    This is an out and out HIPPA violation. Do I feel badly for these 27 people? Absolutely! However, they knew what they were doing. HIPPA rules are very, very clear. If you aren't directly involved in a patient's care, you are violating that person's privacy. And that Union person is a complete, utter idiot.

    I had an MRI done at my facility. . I admitted to my NM that it was absolutely driving me nuts that I could access the films in the computer as well as the reading. She is well aware of some of the health issues/other issues in my life. I also knew that immediate termination was the consequence. We sign, on a regular basis, a letter that is written in plain english -no legalese- a HIPPA letter, ackowledging that we understand the policies and consequences for accessing our own information & that of our family (must go through usual channels). I know that several people have been fired from our facility/system for violation of HIPPA.

    Our privacy was violated years ago by a resident surgeon who in the OR with my baby. Of all people, he told the church gossip exactly how bad my baby's defects were and her outcome looking might grim. So, this is a touchy subject. Even pre-HIPPA, there was an expectation of privacy.

    Cindy RN
    why wuold one not be able to get access to your own records?
  7. by   rph3664
    Quote from twotrees2
    why wuold one not be able to get access to your own records?
    It's discouraged because I have heard of people looking up their own HIV test or cancer biopsy result, and knowing the answer before the doctor told them and not being in a situation where they could be given support.

    This was even before electronic records.

    I had a UA performed where I work a few weeks ago, but I didn't look mine up until my doctor's office called in the prescription. Oh, like I'm really going to care what the chloride content of my urine was! Another person in my department had a mammogram, and after being told it was normal, one of the pharmacists accessed it with her standing there, and she joked, "Everyone got to see my boobs!" :lol: Other people in my department have looked up things, AFTER THEY GOT THEIR RESULTS, and nobody has gotten in trouble.

    I do have a friend who was fired from a med tech job because he processed his girlfriend's blood test (no disease, just a routine draw) and told her it was normal before her doctor did.

    My understanding about the George Clooney thing is that the people who got in trouble were talking about his records to people outside the hospital. As we said at work, "Who cares what his serum creatinine was?!" But you're not supposed to discuss things like this outside of work!
  8. by   rph3664
    I have cringed at the details some people have posted about patients, more than once. This is most common in the OB/GYN thread.

    My dad often asks me if we have any interesting patients in the hospital. I always reply, "Sure! Can't tell you about them, but yeah." And it was that way before HIPAA.

    Once in a while, there are patients I can talk about because their story was in the newspaper or on TV, and then only the details that were in those media. And I would NEVER do this in a public place because you don't know who's standing next to you.

    One of our technicians was briefly in a nursing program, and she told about classmates discussing patients by name in a crowded elevator and not understanding why that isn't appropriate.
  9. by   twotrees2
    Quote from rph3664
    It's discouraged because I have heard of people looking up their own HIV test or cancer biopsy result, and knowing the answer before the doctor told them and not being in a situation where they could be given support.

    This was even before electronic records.

    I had a UA performed where I work a few weeks ago, but I didn't look mine up until my doctor's office called in the prescription. Oh, like I'm really going to care what the chloride content of my urine was! Another person in my department had a mammogram, and after being told it was normal, one of the pharmacists accessed it with her standing there, and she joked, "Everyone got to see my boobs!" :lol: Other people in my department have looked up things, AFTER THEY GOT THEIR RESULTS, and nobody has gotten in trouble.

    I do have a friend who was fired from a med tech job because he processed his girlfriend's blood test (no disease, just a routine draw) and told her it was normal before her doctor did.

    My understanding about the George Clooney thing is that the people who got in trouble were talking about his records to people outside the hospital. As we said at work, "Who cares what his serum creatinine was?!" But you're not supposed to discuss things like this outside of work!
    thanks for the clarification- i see your point- i guess i wasnt thinking of them looking up at work before getting results. i have when i worked at the hospital made copies of some of my records ( with permission to go copy them on break ) but i alwasy had the results first. again - thanks for ointing that out - i wasnt thinking aboutthat.
  10. by   theatredork
    This happened a month before I started orientation for my new job. The IT/Medical Records department really made it clear that accessing any records or any patient not under your care is a violation of their policies. If you mistakenly accessed someones records that was understandable, but we had to mention it to our manager. The can track what charts you access, how long you spend in the chart, and where specifically you're looking in the chart. This particular case was an example used at orientation.

    Honestly, at my hospital these nurses would have been suspended for accessing the records, or fired for sharing the info with people outside of the hospital. New hires on orientation would be automatically fired for just accessing the file.

    I'm always careful to log-off when I step away from a computer, even for a minute. Someone else could use your log in to access a patient file (VIP/celebrity) and you'd be fired or suspended without pay, even though it wasn't you that accessed the records.
  11. by   rph3664
    I could see where they would be stricter with nurses, since you only care for a small number of patients. We pharmacists are involved with the care of every patient in the hospital, so that's probably why nobody in my department has (to my knowledge) been disciplined for inappropriate access of records.

    I have access to radiology reports, but why would I look at them? Sure, they're interesting, but I don't know what to do with that information.

    I did rotations in a small hospital on an Indian reservation, and one of the doctors mentioned in morning report that the day before, she was at the grocery store and overheard two women talking about a patient, by name, who had a very unusual condition. One of the women said, "I've never heard of anything like that! That's really interesting. Who told you about it?" and the other one said, "One of my friends works at the hospital and told me about it."

    Not good.

    My understanding is that the biggest violators of confidentiality are not health care professionals, but secretaries, housekeeping, administration, etc. who don't realize where they stepped over the line.
    Last edit by rph3664 on Feb 4, '08 : Reason: she was at the grocery store

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