Indian-American doctor in Massachusetts convicted for illegally sharing medical files

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An Indian-American gynecologist from Springfield, Mass., was convicted April 30, in connection with allowing a pharmaceutical sales representative to access patient records and lying to federal investigators.

Dr. Rita Luthra, 67, of Longmeadow, was convicted by a federal jury of one count of violation of the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act and one count of obstruction of a criminal health care investigation.

The charge of violating the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act carries a sentence of no greater than one year in prison and/or a fine of $50,000 and one year of supervised release. The charge of obstructing a criminal health care investigation provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000.

U.S. District Court Judge Mark G. Mastroianni has not yet scheduled sentencing. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

From January 2011 through November 2011, Luthra allowed a pharmaceutical company sales representative from Warner Chilcott to access protected health information in her patients’ medical files, a press release from the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts, said. Luthra later provided false information to federal agents when interviewed about her relationship with Warner Chilcott.

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