Sacramemto, CA (PRWEB) April 3, 2006
Documents filed last week in Sacramento federal court (USDC for the EDC No. 2:05-CV-2410-FCD-KLM, Clark v. Rea) seek to add Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as a “permissive defendant” in proceedings alleging violation of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) against an attorney of the Adventist Health System in Roseville, California.
Plaintiff Barb Clark, a registered nurse, claims that she felt “reluctantly safe under the federal medical records confidential law” to answer questions in an interrogation interview by a criminal psychologist hired by the Adventists as part of her on-going workers’ compensation claim against the hospital chain, court documents claim.
“It was more like a military intelligence interrogation, something you might find in Guantanamo Bay,” reports Clark, “but, I thought HIPAA and the DHHS would protect me. They didn’t!”
Court documents allege that a highly sensitive psychiatric interrogation report was then distributed by an Adventist lawyer known as Dennis Hershewe to nearly a dozen people to maliciously harm the nurse and destroy her career in an effort to win a California workers’ compensation case.
“My complaint about these HIPAA privacy abuses has been sitting on the desk of the DHHS for over a year, I want Mike Levitt (Secretary of DHHS), or his privacy czar Winston Wilkinson, to explain why such a simple investigation is taking so long,” cited Clark.
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