More health personnel abusing access to medical database to access confidential info

Health minister looking at more stringent punishments

Increasing numbers of employees in the health sector are being reported to the police for spying on people via the medical database.

Last year, 21 health personnel were fined for looking up people in the database who were not their patients – a figure that has increased dramatically in recent years. In comparison, between 2011 and 2014, just seven were reported.

“Medical records are deeply confidential and doctors who unjustifiably look up patients in the system can be punished with fines and up to four months in prison,” the health minister, Sophie Løhde, told Metroxpress newspaper.

“And in extreme situations they can also be fired and stripped of their authorisation. The punishment is relatively tough, but I am open to discussing a further toughening up of the law.”

READ MORE: More and more doctors closing practices well before retirement age

Fines all round
The 21 health workers who were reported to the police last year all received fines between 4,000 and 15,000 kroner.

There were a total of 71 cases last year, of which 21 ended up as police cases.