Hearsay is a very well defined legal term that is often misunderstood by the nonlawyer. Statements made by a doctor, directly to a third person, regarding your private medical information, may not be hearsay when used to prove the doctor made the statements as the doctor would be the party opponent. So such testimony is evidence and can be used in a breach of duty, breach of implied covenants claim arising from the unauthorized disclosures. That said there may be legitimate reasons the doctor conveyed the information which could be an affirmative defense. You should contact a medical malpractice attorney.
This answer is to a very general question, and is only applicable to the question, applying California law. Legal issues apply state specific laws and analysis, if you find this answer and are not in the state of California a lawyer in your state should be consulted. This answer is made as a public service. The answer is not intended or otherwise constitute legal advice, and is not intended to, or create an attorney-client relationship.
There is no private right of action under HIPAA. You can report this doctor to the Department of Health and Human Services as well as the Medical Board of California, and if they want, they will investigate and take action against him. For a regular invasion of privacy lawsuit, you should consult with a health law attorney, and he/she can advise you if there are other causes of action you can recover for as well. What needs to be proven and if you have enough evidence is something for the lawyer to decide.
We do not have an attorney-client relationship. I am not your lawyer. The statements I have made do not constitute legal advice. Any statements I have made are based upon the very limited facts you have presented, and under the premise that you will consult with a local attorney. This is not an attempt to solicit business. This disclaimer is in addition to any disclaimers that this website has made. I am only licensed in California.
You cannot sue under HIPAA, but you can sue under the California Confidentiality of Medical Information Act. A Los Angeles privacy law firm can help guide you further.
Rabeh M. A. Soofi, Attorney
SOOFI | Legal Counsel
5670 Wilshire Blvd. – 18th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(213) 986-3450 (fax)
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