Tampa VA Loses Private Pictures of Breast Cancer Patients
According to an article in ABC Action News, the Tampa and Bay Pines Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) have discovered that equipment that is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars is missing, which included a camera that contains pictures taken of breast cancer patients. Much of the VA’s equipment is relied upon by veterans with disabilities for their care and when care falls short, you should seek legal counsel.
The missing or stolen equipment has disappeared over the last 2 years, and includes such things as microscopes, laptops, televisions, and a jump drive “containing encrypted patient information.”
One of the most concerning object missing is a camera, which was used by the VA to take pictures of female patients before and after their breast cancer surgeries. The camera was kept at the James A. Haley VA medical center and was discovered missing last November.
The VA describes the photos on the camera as “potentially . . . graphic and personal in nature.” To make matters worse, that camera also included the social security numbers of every patient on the camera.
Confidentiality is always a concern with medical records, and that concern is just as alive at VA medical centers as it is at private medical provider sites. The last thing women being treated for breast cancer want to worry about is embarrassing pictures of them are being made public. Many women don’t make their diagnosis public but this missing camera may force them to.
If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, a South Florida disability representative from Disability Help Group is ready to help. To learn if you are entitled to certain programs and benefits contact our veterans disability rights firm today – 1-(800)-800-3332.