2009 Arkansas News Archive
October 26, 2009 - Doctor and Two Former Hospital Employees Sentenced for HIPAA Violations - Read More
Doctor and Two Former Hospital Employees Sentenced for HIPAA Violations (U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas)
Little Rock – Jane W. Duke, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, along with Thomas J. Browne, Special-Agent-in-Charge of the Little Rock Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, announced on Oct. 26, 2009 the sentencings of Dr. Jay Holland of Little Rock, Arkansas; Sarah Elizabeth Miller of England Arkansas; and Candida Griffin of Little Rock, Arkansas. United States Magistrate Judge Henry L. Jones, Jr. sentenced Holland to one year of probation, a $5,000 fine to be paid in 60 days, and 50 hours of community service educating professionals on HIPAA. Miller was sentenced to one year probation and a $2,500 fine payable in installments. Griffin was sentenced to one year probation and a $1,500 fine payable in installments.
Holland, Miller, and Griffin pleaded guilty on July 20, 2009 to misdemeanor violations of the health information privacy provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) based on their accessing a patient’s records without any legitimate purpose.
“We hope that today’s sentencings send the message that the HIPAA protections apply to every person in the community, regardless of their position or stature. Likewise, the penalties for violating HIPAA apply equally to every person with access to protected health information,” stated Duke.
To report a HIPAA violation, follow the instructions at the US Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights website: www.hhs.gov/ocr/privacyhowtofile.htm or call 214-767-4056, the regional office with oversight over violations occurring in Arkansas.
This case was investigated by the Little Rock Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura G. Hoey. For more information on this case, see attached prior News Release dated 7/20/09. The
July news release is also available at www.usdoj.gov/usao/are/.
Carl Bocchicchio, assistant special agent in charge, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Inspector General, said: “This investigation illustrates the effectiveness of pursuing a multi-facet approach in combating Medicare-fraud by utilizing the False Claims Act statutes and criminal prosecution. The two-prong approach produces positive results in protecting the Medicare trust fund and our beneficiaries.”
“This is not a victimless crime – every person who struggles to pay for health care benefits; every older person who worries about Medicare’s ability to cover them; every taxpayer who helps fund these programs – these are all victims,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Patrick Maley. “The public should know that we will continue to work together to identify and stop those who would line their own pockets with taxpayer money-those who seek to benefit at the expense of our health care system, our economy, and our collective well-being.”
The HHS Office of the Inspector General and the FBI investigated the case. Assistant United States Attorney Lloyd Peeples represented the United States in both the civil and criminal matters.
More information on the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama: http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/aln/