Hits to Medical Privacy

This article first appeared in the Orange County Register and the Los Angeles Register.

Since early 2009 the federal government has reported more than 1,000 cases in which private health information was put at risk, affecting nearly 32 million people. The top 13 cases, each involving at least a half-million people, account for 64 percent of the total. They are the result of theft, hacking or loss of records.

  • 4.9 million victims, Sept. 13, 2011; TRICARE Management Activity, Virginia
  • 4,029,530 victims, July 15, 2013; Advocate Health and Hospitals Corp., Illinois
  • 1.9 million victims, Jan. 21, 2011; Health Net Inc., California
  • 1.7 million victims, Dec. 23, 2010; North Bronx Healthcare Network, New York
  • 1.22 million victims, Dec. 10, 2009; AvMed Inc., Florida
  • 1,055,489 victims, Aug. 10, 2011; The Nemours Foundation, Florida
  • 1,023,209 victims, Aug. 2, 2009; Blue-Cross BlueShield of Tennessee Inc., Tennessee
  • 943,434 victims, Oct. 15, 2011; Sutter Medical Foundation, California
  • 839,711 victims, Nov. 1, 2013; Horizon Healthcare Services Inc., New Jersey
  • 800,000 victims, Feb. 26, 2010; South Shore Hospital, Massachusetts
  • 780,000 victims, March 10, 2013; Utah Department of Health, Utah
  • 729,000 victims, Oct. 12, 2013; AHMC Healthcare Inc., California
  • 514,300 victims, March 11, 2013; Eisenhower Medical Center, California


Ron Campbell can be reached at 714-425-5169 or rwcampbe@usc.edu. Deborah Schoch can be reached at 626-457-4281 or mdschoch@usc.edu.


To access the U.S. Health & Human Services Department’s list of every health privacy breach affecting at least 500 people, visit hhs.gov/ocr/privacy/.

Sources: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services – Office for Civil Rights; Center for Health Reporting

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Ronald Campbell

Ronald Campbell analyzes health care data and costs. Before joining the Center he was a staff writer at the Orange County Register for more than 25 years. He founded the Register’s program in computer-assisted reporting. He has written extensively about the census, immigration, white-collar crime and the trade in human body parts. He has won the Gerald Loeb Award, the IRE Award and placed third in the Philip Meyer Award. He lives in Orange County, Calif. In his spare time he hikes and rock climbs.

© 2019 Center for Health Reporting