Multiple Penalties Issued to Individual Convicted of Health Information Breaches

September 10, 2020

A former medical clinic employee pleaded guilty on Wednesday, Sept. 2 to breaching the health information of several individuals in contravention of the Health Information Act (HIA). Olivia Franc was fined $6,000, given three years probation including not being able to access health information, and is required to complete 180 hours of community service for the infractions.

Ms. Franc accessed the health records of close acquaintances, friends and others in the community. The accesses were made without a legitimate reason to do so. For one of the accesses, Ms. Franc further disclosed an individual’s health information to a friend. The accesses occurred at the Smith Clinic in Camrose, Alta. where she had been employed.

The Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner (OIPC) opened an offence investigation into Ms. Franc’s unauthorized accesses of health information after her employer reported the privacy breach in June 2018 to the OIPC.

Upon conclusion of its investigation, the OIPC referred findings to the Specialized Prosecutions Branch of Alberta Justice. Charges were laid in July 2019.

It is an offence under HIA to knowingly gain or attempt to gain access to health information in contravention of the Act (section 107(2)(b)).

This marked 15 convictions for unauthorized access to health information under HIA since 2001. Of those, 13 convictions have occurred since April 2014.