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New Patient Medical Record Numbers Replace Social Security Numbers

by kimbra on July 9, 2012

Beginning Monday, July 16, the Health Information Management and Information Services teams will lead a mass conversion of patient social security number (SSN) medical record numbers to non-SSN medical record numbers. The process will take approximately 30 days. Please review the details below and pass along to your teams. Approximately 470,000 patients (about 45%) in our database have SSN medical record numbers. With identity theft on the rise, this is not best practice. If there is a breach of protected health information, having a patient’s SSN exposed increases risk. Any patient with a SSN medical record number will receive a non-SSN-medical record number beginning with 887xxxxxx. The conversion will start in Meditech and pass the new non-SSN-medical record number to any downstream systems that receive demographic information from Meditech, including Epic. To eliminate impact on patient care, the following types of patients will not be converted until their account has been discharged:
• Current Inpatient, ED, Observation, SDC, RCR, and REF accounts
• Pre-registered accounts with a date of service more or less than seven days from the attempted conversion date

Medical staff with access to our electronic record systems can search for patients by the old SSN medical record number or by name and will be automatically re-directed to the correct patient and will see the new non-SSN-medical record number. If you or your staff need help identifying a patient whose SSN medical record number has been converted contact Health Information Management at 443-481-4114.