Contact (UPMC Health Plan):
PITTSBURGH (July 15, 2015) – A data file containing protected health information (PHI), intended for a physician’s office in Lawrence County, was sent to an incorrect email address, causing UPMC Health Plan to alert 722 of its members who utilize that practice that some of their PHI was disclosed.
UPMC Health Plan discovered this breach on June 4, 2015, and an investigation determined that the following elements of PHI were disclosed: patient names, member ID numbers, dates of birth, phone numbers, name of the primary care physician’s office, and insurance plan types. No Social Security numbers or information about medical histories was disclosed.
The recipient of the email was contacted and staff was retrained on email procedures. UPMC Health Plan has also sent a letter to affected members to explain the breach and the steps they may want to take to protect themselves from potential harm. UPMC Health Plan reported the breach to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as required under regulations established by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
“We apologize for any anxiety or inconvenience that this incident may cause our members,” said William Gedman, Chief Compliance Officer of the UPMC Insurance Services Division. “Based on our ongoing investigation, we will make all changes necessary to further enhance our already stringent privacy protections.
“UPMC Health Plan is committed to doing our utmost to minimize the chance that this type of issue will occur again.”
UPMC Health Plan is asking affected members who have questions or concerns to contact Member Services at 1-888-876-3764; TTY users can call 1-800-361-2629. Representatives are available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.
About UPMC Health Plan
UPMC Health Plan, the second-largest health insurer in western Pennsylvania, is owned by UPMC, an integrated global health enterprise. The integrated partner companies of the UPMC Insurance Services Division – which includes UPMC Health Plan, UPMC WorkPartners, LifeSolutions (EAP), UPMC for You (Medical Assistance), and Community Care Behavioral Health – offer a full range of group health insurance, Medicare, Special Needs, CHIP, Medical Assistance, behavioral health, employee assistance, and workers' compensation products and services to over 2.6 million members. Our local provider network includes UPMC as well as community providers, totaling more than 125 hospitals and more than 11,500 physicians throughout Pennsylvania and parts of Ohio, West Virginia, and Maryland. For more information, visit www.upmchealthplan.com.