Humana & Cotiviti Resolves Class Action Data Breach Lawsuit

Humana & Cotiviti have decided to resolve a class action lawsuit and the claims from people impacted by a data breach in 2020 that compromised the protected health information (PHI) of 64,654 people.

Humana had partnered with Cotiviti to get assistance with medical record requests to check the data it submits to the HHS’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Before Cotiviti can deliver those services, the PHI of a number of plan members was provided. Cotiviti employed Visionary as a subcontractor to evaluate the health records that were received.

From October 12, 2020 to December 16, 2020, an ex-employee of Visionary viewed its systems and acquired the data of plan members, which was given to other people associated with a personal coding business. The exposed information included the names of plan members, partial or complete Social Security numbers, birth dates, addresses, telephone numbers, email addresses, member ID numbers, subscriber data numbers, dates of service, dates of death, names of the providers, medical record numbers, treatment data, and medical photos.

Because of the data breach, the lawsuit Steven K. Farmer v. Humana Inc. and Cotiviti was filed. Allegedly, the defendants did not appropriately secure plan members’ records and the security breach has put the plaintiffs in danger of identity theft and fraud. Humana and Cotiviti made the decision to resolve the lawsuit to prevent more legal expenses and the uncertainty of trial. Both did not admit any wrongdoing.

Based on the conditions of the settlement, class members will be eligible to file claims for out-of-pocket expenses sustained because of the data breach, up to $5,250 maximum. Around $250 may be claimed for typical losses, such as around 3 hours at $20 for every hour. Claims may be filed for as much as $5,000 for extraordinary losses, including losses as a result of data misuse. Class members will additionally be eligible to receive a two-year credit monitoring and identity theft protection service membership. Humana & Cotiviti have likewise consented to enforce more security procedures to better secure customer data.

Class members can object to or exclude themselves from the settlement deal until November 15, 2022. The schedule of the final approval hearing is on February 8, 2023.

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Christine Garcia is the staff writer on Calculated HIPAA. Christine has several years experience in writing about healthcare sector issues with a focus on the compliance and cybersecurity issues. Christine has developed in-depth knowledge of HIPAA regulations. You can contact Christine at [email protected]. You can follow Christine on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ChrisCalHIPAA