Massachusetts hospital to refund patients for losses after data breach

Attleboro, Mass.-based Sturdy Memorial Hospital has settled a lawsuit for a Feb. 9, 2021, data breach that compromised the protected health information of 60,000 current and former patients, Top Class Actions reported Dec. 5.  

The lawsuit, filed in September 2021, alleged that the health system "maintained the private information in a reckless manner" on a system and network that was "vulnerable" to a data breach. 

The information, which the plaintiffs allege was not encrypted, was seized by hackers, who locked hospital officials out of their own system and held all the data for ransom, which Sturdy paid.  

The lawsuit also alleges that the health system should have made cybersecurity a higher priority and that it failed to adequately notify patients of the breach.

Sturdy Memorial has agreed to refund up to $375 to each class member for ordinary losses, such as out-of-pocket expenses, and up to three hours of lost time at $20 per hour. 

The settlement also provides reimbursement of up to $5,000 in extraordinary losses.

Class members must submit a claim online by Feb. 14 to get payment under the settlement or object to the settlement by Jan. 14.

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