Western Health privacy breach charge going to trial

Gary Kean
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Western Regional Memorial Hospital

CORNER BROOK  There will not be a speedy disposition of the criminal charge against the former Western Health employee accused of inappropriately accessing medical records on the job.

The matter involving Donna Colbourne of Corner Brook was scheduled to be dealt with in provincial court in Corner Brook Friday afternoon.

Usually, a speedy disposition involves a guilty plea and submissions on sentencing for a judge to consider.

However, when the matter was called before Judge Kymil Howe, defence lawyer James Goodwin informed the court that his client would be entering a not guilty plea and going to trial.

Goodwin and Crown attorney Vikas Khaladkar — who both appeared in court via telephone — said they would need seven days for the trial, which has been set to be heard between May 8-16.

Colbourne was charged with violating the Personal Health Information Act by the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner last April.

The original information filed with the court indicated she allegedly accessed the patient files inappropriately between June 2011 to May 2012. In court Friday, the information was amended to change the June 2011 date to April 20, 2012.

Colbourne was employed as a clerk at Western Memorial Regional Hospital at the time the privacy breaches occurred. Western Health went public with the breaches in August 2012, following an internal investigation that resulted in Colbourne's dismissal.

The matter was brought to the attention of the Office of the Information and Privacy Commission, which conducted its own investigation that resulted in the charge against Colbourne.



Organizations: Western Health, Western Memorial Regional Hospital, Office of the Information and Privacy Commission

Geographic location: CORNER BROOK

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