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Old 01-24-2013, 11:20 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Lynne M View Post
That's not the case. I've worked on numerous multi-entity systems where hospitals with no affiliations share a database, and doctors have access to multiple institutions' patient data within the system. We've had unaffiliated hospitals in a community sign an agreement to share IT, because it reduces costs for both institutions.
Are you sure? Or do they share credentialing privileges?

It is not common in my area - that might be a regional occurrence. Our hospitals are very strict that even if we call up and need to share records - we get releases.
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Old 01-24-2013, 11:56 PM   #32
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There's no way to know if she looked into his record or not without the Privacy Officer looking at the log of those that accessed the medical record.

Rather than speculate, wonder, and be upset, it will take a minute for the Privacy Officer to check and see if she did or not. If the answer is no, that's the end of it.

I actually wouldn't bring it up to the doctor's employer at all, unless it turns out she did indeed access the record.

If the answer is no, you might want to let the lady know what her daughter is saying. If the answer is yes, then I would indeed report it to her employer and Office of Civil Rights.
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Old 01-25-2013, 12:28 AM   #33
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My guess would be that the teen girl is making the whole thing up to upset your son. High school drama at its finest.

I do not think it is the least bit unusual that the child of an ER doctor would be familiar with terms related to concussions and even some of the basics of how they work. Most parents talk about their work days at home, and I imagine ER doctors see concussions pretty often and it has come up.

Heck, I am not a doctor, not related to any doctor, never had a concussion and neither have my kids, don;t even watch medical dramas on TV and even I know all the terms you use just from talking to other parents whose kids have had concussions over the years.


I would call or write the hospital and let them know there is gossip at school and you realize it is probably all made up but want to be sure and ask them to check the file and see who accessed it. You should be able to have your answer very quickly and then know if you need to be outraged and makng reports or not.

BTW--for future reference or for anyone else; it is my understanding that the worst thing you can do with a brain injury is a lot of brain stimulation. The brain itself needs to rest to recover. Personally, the most shocking part of the OP to me is that you sent your child with a concussion in to take finals the next day! To me that would be like a child having a sprained ankle and the doctor said to stay off of it but you sent them in for a hockey game anyway.
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Old 01-25-2013, 02:04 AM   #34
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My opinion is that the girl is lying.

First of all, it's really not all that easy to just access someone's record, even though they are electronic. It's a process that requires documentation and consent forms in order to gain access to a record for a patient that is not currently in the system. Being as though your son was not in the hospital at the time, I seriously doubt that MD mom would've gone through the trouble of accessing his record.

Secondly, most people will NOT risk their license over some school kid drama. I've had people I know personally come through where I work, and even though I've been curious, I knew it was not an option to look at their record to see why they were there. It's very easy to access the record of a patient who is currently in the system because all you have to do is click on their name. However, unless you're directly providing care to them, it's a no-no. Like I said though, it's NOT as easy as clicking on their name once they've been discharged. I highly doubt that MD mom would go out of her way (which she would've had to do) to to bring up your son's record.

Sure, there are people who do things they shouldn't do all the time, and people who do things that you think they'd never do. I just know that myself and most people I know would never risk our jobs by looking up our OWN record (which is also a no-no) much less look up some kid's record our son or daughter goes to school with. It's just not very likely.

Reporting a HIPAA violation is a very serious thing. Have you considered calling and speaking to the mom/MD about this? I would sure like to know if my son or daughter was going around school putting my livelihood at risk rather than having complaints filed against me for something I didn't do. If the mom/MD isn't receptive to your attempt to clear things up, THEN I would consider filing a complaint, but I have a suspicion that she will be mortified and straighten things out really fast with her blabbing daughter. I would!
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:52 AM   #35
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I'm seeking unbiased advice here!

My DS 15 was hit in the head at school by another student. The hit was intentional. DS was confused and could not remember details from his day, but he never lost consciousness. Because of his symptoms, we took him to the ER. They did a CT which was clear, but the ER doctor said he had a mild concussion and should not do PE for two weeks and could stay home from school for 5 days (she wrote him an absence excuse).

He returned to school the next day and took his final exams because he did not want to put them off until after the holidays, but still felt lousy for a few more days.

We and his teachers reported the incident to the school, so the guy who hit him was punished according to school policy. This incident has caused quite a bit of personal trouble for DS because a couple the kids who were his friends no longer speak to him; they blame him for the kid getting in trouble. But we are dealing with that!

Now, about a month after this incident, DS heard from another student (who knows all the kids involved) that her mother, who is an ER doctor at a different hospital and who has never treated my son, accessed his CT records and determined that it was not a "medical concussion" because the CT did not show scarring, that the doctor at that the original ER did not know what she was doing, and that my DS is a "baby."

I am upset that she was looking at his records when she had no business doing so and that she told her daughter about this as well.

Does anyone have advice about what I should do? Should I report this to the hospital? To the federal government as a HIPAA violation? Any thoughts?

Thanks.
I haven't read the other replies. At our hospital (where I work and have to regularly get into patient's electronic charts) there is a signature EVERY time someone accesses a chart for ANY reason. I would contact the facility and ask for the compliance department. Tell them you would like to see if anyone has accessed his imaging records and/or regular chart. They should be able to tell you if anyone was in there who had no cause to be. And trust me, if they were they will be dealt with. I'd do it today.
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:59 AM   #36
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How do you know the girl is telling the truth about her mother? It really sounds like someone trying to get your son riled up again.

I also doubt that Hospital A would have been sharing records with Hospital B without a signed consent in place. Just from my experience, two unaffiliated hospitals would not have a system in place for employees to look at each other's records. The request would have have to gone through someone at the hospital where your son was treated.
I know in our area medical imaging is linked between the local facilities. That way Dr. A can refer a patient to Dr. B across town and the images are right on the "PACS" system- saves having to send hard copies.

Like I said in my previous post, every time some accesses a record they leave and electronic signature or fingerprint- the compliance department can see who was in a record and when.
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Old 01-25-2013, 05:18 AM   #37
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Our PACS is an internal system but there is a very large imaging chain that one of our admin people is able to access even though we have absolutely no affiliation with that imaging chain. This is done only when we have a patient in for a procedure or exam and don't have the prior studies on disk or hard copies of the films. I have no idea how this is done and don't want to know. So yes, it can be done.

That said, everytime you log onto PACS, there is a record of exactly what studies you have gone into and viewed. If this ER doc had accessed your son's exam, I don't think it would be difficult for the PACS administrator at that hospital to confirm it.

As a previous poster also said, it is possible that the doctor also does work for the other hospital as well and has access to their PACS system. A lot of radiologists will read for more than one facility so it is not that farfetched to guess that this doc may do the same.

I would suggest you contact the hospital in question and find out to whom a potential HIPAA violation should be reporter and go from there.
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:21 AM   #38
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Is it possible? Yes. Plausible? No.

The mother of a girl who was not a participant in the situation is going to risk her job, her license abd her career to involve herself in an argument between two boys? In her shoes I might be tempted to look at the records, but to discuss them with her teenage daughter and allow her daughter to share those juicy tidbits?

I'm thinking the daughter might be "embelishing" the truth.


This,. I know many nurses and most never intentionally go snooping but the few I asked said even if they did see some one elses records no way would they start blabbing about it. especially to a teenage daughter they know is in the same circles with the patient.
I asked 2 friends and basically I got responses like "Are you high?"

following HIPPA guidelines is such a big deal, I can't imagine this mother/doctor jepordizing her license, her job and a boat load of lawsuits to gossip to her daughter.

I too think daughter is perhaps embelishing. Do you know the mom can you speak to her directly?

What reason would this er doctor have to access your sons records a MONTH after the incident? I just can't see it? for some high school fight?
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Old 01-25-2013, 06:57 AM   #39
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Originally Posted by eliza61



This,. I know many nurses and most never intentionally go snooping but the few I asked said even if they did see some one elses records no way would they start blabbing about it. especially to a teenage daughter they know is in the same circles with the patient.
I asked 2 friends and basically I got responses like "Are you high?"

following HIPPA guidelines is such a big deal, I can't imagine this mother/doctor jepordizing her license, her job and a boat load of lawsuits to gossip to her daughter.

I too think daughter is perhaps embelishing. Do you know the mom can you speak to her directly?

What reason would this er doctor have to access your sons records a MONTH after the incident? I just can't see it? for some high school fight?
If the mom accessed it, I think she did it right after the incident. My son is not friends with this girl so he does not talk to her regularly.

And it was not a "fight." My son was sitting down and was hit from behind by a kid who has harassed him and other kids before.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:15 AM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chloelovesdisney View Post
There's no way to know if she looked into his record or not without the Privacy Officer looking at the log of those that accessed the medical record.

Rather than speculate, wonder, and be upset, it will take a minute for the Privacy Officer to check and see if she did or not. If the answer is no, that's the end of it.

I actually wouldn't bring it up to the doctor's employer at all, unless it turns out she did indeed access the record.

If the answer is no, you might want to let the lady know what her daughter is saying. If the answer is yes, then I would indeed report it to her employer and Office of Civil Rights.
This. All of this. Make the call OP.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:22 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by Tam1067 View Post
If the mom accessed it, I think she did it right after the incident. My son is not friends with this girl so he does not talk to her regularly.

And it was not a "fight." My son was sitting down and was hit from behind by a kid who has harassed him and other kids before.
sorry, I didn't mean to offend.

My basic thought was this seems like a big case of "telephone". you say your son doesn't really communicate with the girl so this could very well be "ramped" up. Your son heard this from another student who sounds like they are not found of your son so it's not beyond the realm of possibility that she played the "my mom is a doctor" to give credance to her gossip.

My concern is of course accusing some one of some thing that can have very very serious implications on the basis of "he said, she said" especially in a high school setting.
You call the hospital admin without proof and it turns out to be not true, it's still a very big deal ESPECIALLY for a doctor.
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Last edited by eliza61; 01-25-2013 at 07:30 AM.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:25 AM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tam1067 View Post
I'm seeking unbiased advice here!

My DS 15 was hit in the head at school by another student. The hit was intentional. DS was confused and could not remember details from his day, but he never lost consciousness. Because of his symptoms, we took him to the ER. They did a CT which was clear, but the ER doctor said he had a mild concussion and should not do PE for two weeks and could stay home from school for 5 days (she wrote him an absence excuse).

He returned to school the next day and took his final exams because he did not want to put them off until after the holidays, but still felt lousy for a few more days.

We and his teachers reported the incident to the school, so the guy who hit him was punished according to school policy. This incident has caused quite a bit of personal trouble for DS because a couple the kids who were his friends no longer speak to him; they blame him for the kid getting in trouble. But we are dealing with that!

Now, about a month after this incident, DS heard from another student (who knows all the kids involved) that her mother, who is an ER doctor at a different hospital and who has never treated my son, accessed his CT records and determined that it was not a "medical concussion" because the CT did not show scarring, that the doctor at that the original ER did not know what she was doing, and that my DS is a "baby."

I am upset that she was looking at his records when she had no business doing so and that she told her daughter about this as well.

Does anyone have advice about what I should do? Should I report this to the hospital? To the federal government as a HIPAA violation? Any thoughts?

Thanks.
If this story happened exactly has you told it than yes, it's a huge HIPPA violation
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:27 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by chloelovesdisney View Post
There's no way to know if she looked into his record or not without the Privacy Officer looking at the log of those that accessed the medical record.

Rather than speculate, wonder, and be upset, it will take a minute for the Privacy Officer to check and see if she did or not. If the answer is no, that's the end of it.

I actually wouldn't bring it up to the doctor's employer at all, unless it turns out she did indeed access the record.

If the answer is no, you might want to let the lady know what her daughter is saying. If the answer is yes, then I would indeed report it to her employer and Office of Civil Rights.
This is good advice.
Have the privacy officer take a look.
I work for IT in a hospital and it does literally take a very short time to check into who has electronically accessed a medical record.

If the MD mother did access the record, then she will suffer the consequences. All of us in healthcare are well aware of HIPPa and privacy and if we choose to violate thiose regulations, we know the consequences.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:39 AM   #44
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Given all the information provided someone is lying or someone acted unethically. If you report the incident and the compliance department checks the audit trail and finds no inappropriate access to the records in question then there was no violation. So that leaves the daughter either outright lying or embellishing on a conversation she heard/overheard. Does anyone else think that the mother should be aware of what the daughter is going around saying? That perhaps the daughter should be educated on the seriousness of her claims and the impact it could have on her mother's career?
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:50 AM   #45
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Given all the information provided someone is lying or someone acted unethically. If you report the incident and the compliance department checks the audit trail and finds no inappropriate access to the records in question then there was no violation. So that leaves the daughter either outright lying or embellishing on a conversation she heard/overheard. Does anyone else think that the mother should be aware of what the daughter is going around saying? That perhaps the daughter should be educated on the seriousness of her claims and the impact it could have on her mother's career?
I agree. I would definitely file a report. If it is false, no harm done. Either way--the mother should know what the daughter is saying.
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