New York Man Sues CVS for Buying Medical Records
A Manhattan man has filed a $200 million class action lawsuit against the CVS drugstore chain for buying his medical records after his neighborhood pharmacy closed, charging that the chain had "no right to the sensitive information without his consent," the New YorkDaily News reports. The suit also names Trio Drugs, the man's former drugstore. The man, who has AIDS, said, "I chose a mom-and-pop [drug store] because it was small and private. Suddenly I turn around and find out (my records) are sitting in a store that has 100,000 employees and 4,000 stores across the country and a main computer that is linked to every single store." The man, who asked to remain anonymous and said he fears "repercussions" if his diagnosis is revealed, says he asked CVS to turn over his records, but the chain refused. He said, "There are thousands of people out there that are having information sold for profit. There has to be some kind of law that would stop stores like CVS from putting profit ahead of privacy." CVS spokesperson Todd Andrews said that purchasing prescription drug records is "perfectly legal." He added that CVS "value[s] the privacy of [its] customers and [is] absolutely committed to protecting confidential customer information. We would not reveal or release personally identifiable facts, data or information ... without prior consent of the consumer, except as authorized or required by law" (Gardner, New York Daily News, 4/3).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.