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Indiana: Court of Appeals issues decision on vicarious liability of hospital for HIPAA violation by employee

The Court of Appeals of Indiana ('the Court of Appeals') issued, on 15 May 2020, its decision ('the Decision') in Haley SoderVick v. Parkview Health System, Inc., overturning the Trial Court's decision to grant summary judgement in favour of Parkview, and reinstating a patient's claim for the vicarious liability of a hospital following an alleged Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 ('HIPAA') violation by an employee of the hospital. In particular, the Court of Appeals outlined that the employee had shared, with their spouse, the patient's personal data when inputting the data into the hospital's register, and that Parkview argued, in its motion for summary judgment, that there was no genuine issue of material fact as to whether the employee was acting in the scope of their employment. However, the Court of Appeals found that there is an issue of material fact as to whether the employee was acting in the scope of employment when the alleged violation occurred, specifically, whether the conduct was incidental to authorised employment activities. As a result, the Court of Appeals found that the Trial Court had erred in granting summary judgment in favour of Parkview, and therefore reversed that portion of the order, and remanded the case for further proceedings. 

You can read the Decision here.