A former dentist, Joseph Beck, whose license was revoked by the Indiana Board of Dentistry in 2011, became embroiled in more turmoil for throwing away thousands of patient files in a dumpster beside an Indianapolis church, according to a WTHR news report.
The shocking discovery of over 7,000 documents, which included sensitive medical records and banking information, led the state of Indiana, for the first time in history, to take court action against a doctor for violating federal HIPAA privacy regulations. Beck has settled the lawsuit and has agreed to pay a $12,000 fine, according to the WTHR report.
Beck’s license was permanently revoked by the IBD in 2011 after a state investigation revealed fraudulent billing and negligence.
A year and a half later, state investigators, at the behest of Attorney General Greg Zoeller, discovered the encapsulation of 6,000 patient lives discarded in a dumpster beside an Indianapolis church.
The action taken against Beck for improperly disposing of medical records highlights an unprecedented action by state agencies.
Attorney General Greg Zoeller said that he hopes this firm disciplinary action has sent a “strong message” to all doctors that it is vital to safeguard the privacy of patients by disposing their medical records properly.
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