A password-protected computer containing patient medical information was stolen from a doctor’s locked office last month, Stanford Hospital officials said today. The hospital is notifying 2,500 patients by mail of the theft, which occurred between July 15 and 16, university spokeswoman Lisa Lapin said. The computer contained software that should indicate whether it was connected to the Internet and show its location, but so far it has not been detected, Lapin said.
However, patients whose information might have been on the computer are being notified as a precaution, according to hospital officials. The information contained includes patient names, location of service and medical record numbers. Some records may include details such as treatment histories, birth dates or ages and social security numbers, Lapin said. The theft is being investigated by campus security and police, and security measures are being reviewed and tightened, Lapin said
“We take this incident extremely seriously,” Lapin said. “We deeply regret any concern or inconvenience this theft may cause our patients and their families.” Patients with questions can call toll free (855) 731-6016, Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Those who do not receive letters are not thought to be affected, while affected patients are being offered the option of free identity protection services.
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