Stolen laptop contained personal health information

Winnipeg Health Region
Published Friday, September 19, 2014

A laptop containing personal health information was recently stolen from an office of a doctor working in the Department of Internal Medicine within the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

The laptop contained personal health information from patient consultations undertaken within the past eighteen months at the Hepatology Clinic located within the Health Sciences Centre.

Personal health information from 322 patients was contained on the computer.

"The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority takes patient privacy and its role in safeguarding personal health information seriously," said Mr. Real Cloutier, Vice-President and Chief Operating Officer for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

The incident has been reported to the Winnipeg Police Service.  As well, the Manitoba Ombudsman has been notified of the potential privacy breach resulting from the theft.  Letters to all affected patients notifying them and disclosing the incident have been issued by the Region's privacy office.

"We can appreciate how unsettling this must be for patients," said Mr. Cloutier.  "We are deeply sorry, and want to assure patients and the public we are looking at every option possible to get the laptop back."

"The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority has a strong regimen of training, policies, and technical supports in place for all staff that are meant to safeguard patient information and prevent potential breaches such as this," said Mr. Cloutier.  "This is why we are also conducting an internal investigation to determine exactly how and why certain security measures do not appear to have been followed in this case."

Unauthorized use or disclosure of confidential information may result in a disciplinary response up to and including termination of employment, association, or appointment.  Individuals charged and convicted of an offence under The Personal Health Information Act may be required by the Court to pay a fine of up to $50,000.

Additional information about the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority's access and privacy policies can be found on-line at

For more information contact

Ms. Melissa Hoft
Winnipeg Regional Health Authority
Tel: 204-926-7868      

Bookmark Email Print Share this on Facebook SHARE Share this on Twitter Tweet RSS Feeds RSS
Make text smaller Make text bigger
Traditional Territories Acknowledgement
The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority acknowledges that it provides health services in facilities located in Treaty One and Treaty Five territories, the homelands of the Métis Nation and the original lands of the Inuit people. The WRHA respects and acknowledges harms and mistakes, and we dedicate ourselves to collaborate in partnership with First Nation, Métis and Inuit people in the spirit of reconciliation.
Click here to read more about the WRHA's efforts towards reconciliation

WRHA Accessibility Plan Icon
Wait Times
View the Winnipeg Health Region's current approximate Emergency Department and Urgent Care wait times.

View wait times
Find Services
Looking for health services in Winnipeg?

Call Health Links-Info Sante at 788-8200

Search 211 Manitoba

Explore alternatives to emergency departments at

Find a Doctor
Contact Us
Do you have any comments or concerns?

Click here to contact us
The Winnipeg Health Region has a variety of career opportunities to suit your unique goals and needs.

Visit our Careers site
WRHA Logo Help| Terms of Use | Contact Us | En français