The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services will pay a $1.7 million federal fine to resolve violations of the HIPAA Security Rule under its Medicaid program.

The agency also has agreed to a corrective action program negotiated with the federal HHS Office for Civil Rights. The action comes following the theft of a USB drive, from the vehicle of a DHSS employee, that may have contained protected health information, according to a statement from the OCR. An investigation found DHSS had failed on many levels to protect electronic PHI.

Deficiencies included failures to complete a risk analysis, implement sufficient risk management measures, complete security training for employees, implement device and media controls, and address device and media encryption. The resolution agreement between DHSS and OCR is available here.

Other organizations that have paid major fines to OCR following breaches include Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Tennessee ($1.5 million), UCLA Health System ($865,000), Massachusetts General Hospital ($1 million), Cignet Health ($4.3 million), Rite Aid ($1 million), CVS/pharmacy ($2.2 million) Phoenix Cardiac Surgery ($100,000) and Providence Health & Services ($100,000).

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