Workers allegedly snoop in Suleman file

BELLFLOWER, Calif. Several workers at /*Kaiser Permanente*/ in Bellflower are without a job after allegedly snooping into her medical records.

Hospital officials said they had hoped to avoid this type of breach. They had given all the workers extra training on patient privacy laws before Suleman gave birth at the Bellflower hospital.

About a dozen of them have lost their jobs for peeking into Suleman and her children's private medical records about 10 days ago. Two workers were fired, 13 resigned and eight workers were disciplined.

The case was reported to the California Department of Public Health.

Officials said it appears none of Suleman's private medical information was leaked to the public.

Kaiser released a statement on Tuesday that said, "We have no evidence to indicate that the individuals who looked at the records provided any information from the medical record to anyone else or did anything with the information other than look at it."

Suleman's lawyer Jeffrey Czech said he thinks the only reason the workers peeked into the records was to identify the father of the octuplets.

"Ms. Suleman is very happy with the Kaiser staff and believes they do everything in their power to rectify the situation," Czech said in a statement.

Suleman said she has no plans at this point to sue Kaiser over this breach.

A similar privacy breach at UCLA hospitals led to celebrities' medical information getting leaked to tabloids in recent years, including details of Farrah Fawcett's cancer treatment showing up in the National Enquirer. An investigation there resulted in firings, suspensions and warnings for 165 hospital employees, ranging from doctors to orderlies.

The 33-year-old single mother of 14 gave birth to her octuplets on Jan. 26.

She is still waiting for two of the octuplets to come home.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.



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