Medical and personal information for as many as 5,000 people 18 and younger in Louisiana and Mississippi may have been exposed after a laptop was stolen in July from the car of a faculty member at the LSU Health Sciences Center New Orleans School of Medicine, officials said Tuesday.
Dr. Christopher Roth, an assistant urology professor, reported that his university-issued laptop was stolen from his car July 16 or 17. His car was parked in front of his home, officials said. Roth reported the theft to police, but the laptop has not been recovered.
After a two-month process to reconstruct the files on the laptop, school officials determined the information on it included names, birthdates, descriptions of patients’ conditions, lab test results, radiological and ultrasound images, medical record numbers, and diagnosis and treatment information.
No Social Security numbers, credit card numbers, bank account information or other financial data were stored on the laptop, officials said.
It is unknown whether any specific patients’ data were on the stolen laptop, but those patients who the university believes may have had information on it will be notified by mail and receive information about how to protect themselves against identity theft, officials said.
While the exhaustive investigation appears to have found thousands of patients, others may remain unidentified. Therefore, any of Roth’s patients from July 2009 to July 16, 2015, who do not receive a letter are asked to call (504) 568-8672 or email LSUHSCNOfirstname.lastname@example.org.