March 31, 2014
Unethical Business Conduct
There are several items that would characterize an individual within a business having unethical business conduct. The use of an individual’s confidential information is not only an ethical violation, it is considered illegal. This is called a violation of Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996.
The HIPAA act is a law that was enacted by The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services issued the Privacy Rule to implement the requirement of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, to keep the welfare of people’s health insurance and health care information confidential and private. In the case of an Indiana woman versus a Walgreen Pharmacist, the Pharmacist violated the HIPAA act. The Indiana Superior Court awarded the woman $1.44 million after the courts argued that the Walgreens Pharmacist shared the woman’s prescription history. The Pharmacists husband had previously had an affair with woman and learned that the woman had also became pregnant as a result of the affair. The Pharmacist accessed the woman’s health information, specifically her prescription history and gave said information to her husband. This was after learning that the woman was asking for child support the child. The information obtained in the prescription history was used by the couple to blackmail the woman so the husband did not have to pay child support.
The woman filed a case with the Superior Court of Indiana against Walgreens and the Pharmacist claiming that “both parties had breached their statutory and common law duties of confidentiality and privacy” (Fox, 2013). According to The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2014), Organizations or companies are subject to the Privacy Rule, this is called “covered entities,” this is also the case for health care providers such as the pharmacist. The claims against Walgreens were