Alberta laptop theft prompts $11M class action lawsuit

An Edmonton woman has launched an $11-million class-action lawsuit against Medicentres over a stolen laptop containing the health information of 620,000 Albertans.

Unencrypted laptop contained health information of 620,000 Medicentres patients

Alberta Health Minister Fred Horne revealed the privacy breach last week, one day after Medicentres informed him about the laptop theft. (John Archer/CBC News)

An Edmonton woman has launched an $11-million class action lawsuit against Medicentres over a stolen laptop that contained the health information of 620,000 Albertans.

The laptop contained the names, dates of birth, provincial health card numbers, billing codes and diagnostic codes of the individuals seen at Medicentres between May 2, 2011, and Sept. 10, 2013.

The unencrypted laptop went missing in September, but the public wasn’t told about the theft and privacy breach until last week.

The statement of claim was filed by Charmaine L’Hirondelle as representative plaintiff on Jan. 28.

The court document alleges that Medicentres was negligent in failing to protect private information and taking more than four months to tell patients about the privacy breach.

Health Minister Fred Horne wasn’t told about the theft until Jan. 21 even though the theft occurred at the end of September.

The claims in the court document have not been proven in court.