Thursday, 18 July 2019
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Updated: Federal lawsuit filed against Atchison Hospital

(MSC News)--A lawsuit filed in federal court alleges the Atchison Hospital divulged intimate private details of a woman’s sexual assault evaluation and treatment to her rapist.

And months later, after a “ barrage” of harassment, the suit alleges the woman was raped again by the same man.

According to a published report in The Kansas City Star, the woman filed the lawsuit against the Atchison Hospital and the X-ray technician accused of disclosing the patient’s information to her attacker.

The suit says the technician was fired by the hospital but was rehired at  Saint Luke's Cushing Hospital in Leavenworth County not long after.

Her attorneys said in the suit that the woman, who lives in nearby Missouri, trusted the hospital with information about the May 2017 assault, which included the name of her assailant.  In addition, her attorneys said she was adamant her health information not be released to third parties.

The petition accused the hospital of not having adequate protocols in place to protect patient information.

Atchison Hospital has not filed a response in court.

The woman's claims included invasion of privacy, negligence, breach of fiduciary duty and punitive damages. She argued she was entitled to more than $75,000 in damages for each count.

Editor's Note: Atchison Hospital CEO John Jacobson issued the following statement Friday evening in response to the lawsuit 

As you may have seen, a former Atchison Hospital patient filed a lawsuit against the Hospital and one of our former X-ray technicians related to the disclosure of the patient’s medical records.  Patient confidentiality at Atchison Hospital and our ability to protect personal information is a top priority of ours. While we are limited with what we can share related to this situation, we are deeply disturbed by the actions of this former employee. In fact, when we were made aware of this situation, we took immediate steps to investigate and within two days, we terminated this individual’s employment.
In addition, we reviewed this specific situation to understand what could be done differently in the future and as a result, immediately implemented changes including stricter accessibility requirements to our Health Information Management (HMI) department. We are committed to doing everything possible to provide a safe and caring environment for our patients in Atchison and our surrounding communities, and paramount to that is confidentiality and privacy around personal medical information.



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