University of Chicago Medical Center sued over Facebook tracking tool

University of Chicago Medical Center is being sued in federal court for allegedly sharing patient information with Facebook through the use of "pixel" tracking technology.

Patient Sophia Hartley, of Wisconsin, filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on Oct. 25, alleging that University of Chicago Medical Center violated privacy laws by knowingly disclosing patients' protected health information to Facebook, whose parent company Meta is also named in the lawsuit. The plaintiff is seeking class-action status, damages and injunctive and other equitable relief.

"As part of our deep commitment to providing excellent patient care, the Medical Center is wholly committed to protecting patient privacy and to complying with all applicable laws and regulations," a University of Chicago spokesperson emailed Becker's. "This lawsuit is very similar to numerous lawsuits recently filed by plaintiffs' class action firms against our peers regionally and nationally. As is our policy, the Medical Center will not be further commenting on this pending litigation publicly, and we will be responding vigorously in court."

University of Chicago Medical Center joins a growing list of hospitals and health systems facing lawsuits over their use of the Meta Pixel, a marketing and consumer-tracking tool that may have transmitted patients' personal and health information to the social media giant. In recent days, complaints have been filed against Raleigh, N.C.-based WakeMed and Advocate Aurora Health, dually headquartered in Downers Grove, Ill., and Milwaukee.

Meta didn't respond to a request from Becker's for comment.

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