COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4)- A nurse in Colorado Springs admits she used a hospital’s database to look up patient information. Lori Neill also said she is not the only one.
“I admitted that I looked up things like demographics on phone numbers of people who had already given them to me, an address for a birthday card. there were times I read medical information,” said Neill.
While Colorado Springs police won’t say what they believe Neill was using the information for, she says the police accusations center around her other calling as a psychic.
Neill said police told her they are investigating whether or not she used the Memorial Hospital database to search out new clients and then contact them about scheduling a psychic reading. They are also investigating whether she used the medical information to help with the readings.
“The bottom line is I never misused any medical information,” said Neill.
Neill claims that what she was doing happens a lot and that she is not the only one looking at what some think is private information.
“It is no defense to say that it’s a common thing. And I’m not even saying my coworkers in the medical community are bad people. It’s a human thing,” said Neill.
Memorial Hospital spokesman Brian Newsome said anyone who is given access to the information has to have a medical, billing or operational reason to see it.
But Neill claims that access means you can look at any of the records, which is why she says police claim she access more than 2,000 medical records.
“In this database you put in two letters for your first name and two letters for your last name, and then you get a drop down list of names. Every name that ever came up on a drop down list looked like it was accessed,” said Neill.
Neill said she hopes her mistake will be a lesson for everyone. She has resigned from Memorial Hospital.
Hospital officials are notifying patients whose files were viewed. The hospital is also creating a task force to increase security for the data base.