Info for wrong patients possibly sent to thousands of West Virginia veterans

Published: Apr. 8, 2019 at 4:35 PM EDT
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The Veterans Health Administration is notifying thousands of veterans that their personal information, including lab results, may have been sent to other patients.

The problem was linked to the Martinsburg VA Medical Center in West Virginia.

According to a press release from the VHA, letters are being mailed to 4,882 veterans letting them know about the potential disclosure of limited information to another VA patient.

They no social security numbers were divulged in the mixup, which they pinned on Xerox Corp., which was contracted to the VA for printing purposes.

The release says a misalignment of letter contents with the name and address of VA patients led to a major error beginning on Wednesday, Feb. 13, not discovered until Saturday, Feb. 16.

The VHA uses an app that converts information from a patient's electronic health record into an easy-to-read format, then prints and mails the letter. But the misalignment of Xerox's software led to letters being printed addressed to patients with diagnostic lab results, imaging results, and appointment scheduling meant for other patients.

New, corrected letters are going out to all affected patients while the VA reviews its quality control process.

Any veteran who receives health care at the Martinsburg VA Medical can call the Martinsburg VA Medical Center Privacy Officer, Alice Torres, at 1-800-817-3807, ext. 3024 between the hours of 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday with questions or concerns.