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  1. AsanRN

    Coworker violated HIPPA

    What would you do? I work in an Infectious Disease Clinic. I am newer to this role. My nephew, who is gay, called me one day at work to tell me he was diagnosed with HIV. I was able to get him in right away. All of my coworkers were supportive. I was very appreciative. I work with a friend that I have known for years. Well, my nephew kept coming back to the clinic, weekly. I asked him why he was coming, and he said, "For some shots, it's no big deal." I got the sense he didn't want to tell me, so I didn't press the issue. I started to think, "Oh wow, he probably has syphilis." I did not, and would not, ever look at his medical record. Not only would it be a complete violation of trust between my nephew and I, I also figured they would be watching my activity since I work there and because of the sensitivity of the issue. i casually mentioned to my friend and coworker that I thought he had syphilis. She asked me, "What makes you think that?" I said, "Well, he keeps coming down here for shots, as he calls it. I figured that would be the only reason." She said, "Yeah, he does. I saw it." Then she looked at her computer! I was dumbfounded. I would never turn her in or tell on her. However, my feelings are hurt. He's my family. Even though she wronged me, I am worried about her being found out and losing her job. I guess I am telling you this for emotional support. Also, please don't become complacent in your practice. Don't feel as if you have a right to know something. Don't do this to your friends or coworkers. When you are the victim of this, it hurts. What do you guys think?