Thursday, October 06, 2005

Incident: Medical records blowing in the wind in Toronto

This really sounds like a comedy of errors that ceases to be funny when you realize the real medical records from real people are involved. The Canadian Press is reporting that a recycling company gave away -- yes, gave away -- loads of medical records to a movie company for use as props. They were strewn about a movie set to make it look like New York on September 11th. The Ontario Information and Privacy Commissioner is on the case: Disney Unit Probed for Using Real Medical Records, Star Says:

"Oct. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Walt Disney Co.'s Touchstone Television will be investigated for possibly breaking Ontario privacy laws when it used real patient medical records during a filming in Toronto, the Toronto Star said today.

The ``fake garbage'' that littered a downtown street yesterday for the filming of a show about the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the U.S. were actually medical documents, including ultrasounds and X-rays, from a Toronto clinic. They included patient names and addresses and government health insurance numbers, the newspaper said.

Ontario privacy commissioner Ann Cavoukian said she would begin an investigation, the Star reported. Ontario's Ministry of Health also plans to start an investigation, spokesman David Spencer told the newspaper.

An unidentified Touchstone Television spokesman told the Star the company removed the documents from the scene when it learned of the contents and they would not be used again..."

See also: Littered health records probed.

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