In today's healthcare environment medical record tampering is a grave problem that is only getting worse. Many healthcare professionals carry out medical record tampering schemes in order to cover up some sort of negligence or mistake. As a result, spoliation of the record will most likely occur making the record useless in a court of law. However, covering up one's negligence is not the only reason why medical record tampering occurs. Medical identity theft and insurance fraud are also core reasons why someone commits record tampering. According to the FTC, medical identity theft happens when someone steals your personal information and uses it to commit health care fraud. Reports indicate that 10 percent of all identity theft victims in 2005 were a result of some sort of medical identity theft and this number continues to grow annually. For medical identity theft to happen some sort of medical record tampering must occur. Once the offender has acquired a patient's medical identity, that offender can then submit false insurance claims or receive medical care under the victim's identity. Consequently, medical record tampering that leads to identity theft can create serious healthcare implications for the patient victim. Some of these implications include having the offender's blood type or test results in your record. Additionally, it is very difficult for the patient to delete the offender's medical information from their own medical record due to HIPAA regulations. Some hospitals may be fearful of deleting such information as a result of the civil and criminal fines associated with such actions under HIPAA.
For more info about learning how to detect tampering in medical records, read about the Certified Legal Nurse Investigator (CLNI) Certification.
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