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Large-Scale Breaches Double, OCR May Take Away Consent Option

HEALTHCARE PRIVACY—U.S.

April 19, 2010

The number of entities reporting large-scale breaches of patient information has doubled since February, reports HealthLeaders Media. The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) Web site now lists 64 entities as having reported breaches of unsecured personal health information affecting 500 or more individuals, the report states. The HITECH Act requires the OCR to make public such breaches. Eight of the 64 breaches involve unnamed sole practitioners. The OCR cannot release the names of those practitioners without their consent, but the agency filed a notice in the Federal Register last week indicating its intent to take away the "consent" option.

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