Data breach affects 2,500 GHS patients

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About one-fifth of the cardiac-monitored patients at the Greenville Health System’s Carolina Cardiology Consultants were affected by a recent data breach, GHS officials announced today.

Some personal information from around 2,500 patients was downloaded inappropriately by a former employee of Ambucor Health Solutions, a national company that provides remote-monitoring labor service for cardiac devices. All of the people who were affected will be notified by Delaware-based Ambucor, which is working with law enforcement in the investigation, which began in July, 2016.

So far, Ambucor officials say that they have no indication that the personal data had been misused. Also, the patient information did not include credit or debit card numbers, medical insurance, or Medicare/Medicaid numbers, or other financial information, according to GHS.

The downloaded information may have included:

  • patient’s name
  • patient’s date of birth
  • patient identification number
  • patient’s phone number, address, race
  • patient’s diagnosis, medications, testing data
  • medical device information, including the manufacturer, identification number, and model/serial numbers;
  • Ambucor enrollment number, enrollment date, technician name, and
  • the physician name and name and address of practice where the patient was seen.

Ambucor told GHS of only one patient whose social security information was downloaded.

As a precaution, Ambucor will offer affected patients — at no charge — a year of identity protection services and related recovery services, as well as $1 million of identity theft insurance. The company also is taking steps to prevent this type of data breach from recurring.

“GHS and Carolina Cardiology Consultants take patient privacy seriously and deeply regret any inconvenience or concern this incident may cause our patients,” said Dr. Josephy Manfredi, ambulatory director of electrophysiology.

Next week, affected patients will receive letters with instructions for activating the free identity protection services. Patients also can call Ambucor’s dedicated call center at 866-313-7933 or the GHS Privacy Office at 864-797-7755.

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