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Moody Obtains Judgment Resolving Community Health Systems Data Breach Investigation

Staff Report

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody, along with 27 other state attorneys general, obtained a judgment against Tennessee-based Community Health Systems, Inc., and its subsidiary, CHSPSC LLC. This judgment resolves an investigation of a data breach that impacted approximately 6.1 million patients, including more than 430,000 from the state of Florida.

At the time of the data breach, CHS owned, leased or operated 206 affiliated hospitals, including 37 located in Florida. Information exposed in the breach included the addresses, birthdates, names, phone numbers and Social Security numbers of patients. The judgment, agreed to by CHS, requires a $5 million payment to the states and provides that CHS agrees to implement and maintain a comprehensive information security program reasonably designed to safeguard personal information and protected health information that will include specific information security requirements.  

Attorney General Ashley Moody attends a press conference held by U.S. Attorney Lawrence Keefe with Drug Enforcement Administration Acting Administrator Timothy Shea and sheriffs from the Northern District of Florida to discuss methamphetamine distribution and related crimes at the U.S. Attorney's Office Tuesday, Oct. 6, 2020.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Health care patients are routinely asked to reveal personal information in the course of treatment. The added stress surrounding a data breach exposing personal information can be overwhelming. I’m glad we were able to provide relief to the more than 430,000 Floridians impacted by the negligent actions of this health care company.”

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody speaks during a Women for Trump campaign event in Saturday on Saturday, Sept. 19.

Specific information security measures contained in the agreed judgment include requirements to:

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody in January 2019

Develop a written incident response plan;

Incorporate security awareness and privacy training for all personnel who have access to protected health information;

Limit unnecessary or inappropriate access to protected health information; and

Implement specific policies and procedures regarding business associates, including use of business associate agreements and audits of business associates.

Attorney General Ashley Moody listens as Secretary of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection Noah Valenstein speaks regarding the acquisition of 717 acres of land by Florida Forever within the Wakulla Springs Protection Zone during a Florida Cabinet meeting Thursday, July 25, 2019.

In addition to Florida, represented by Consumer Protection Division assistant attorney general Patrice Malloy, the multistate group includes Alaska, Arkansas, Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington and West Virginia.

The proposed judgment is pending judicial approval.