DALLAS – Coronavirus cases and hospitalizations are rising in Texas, and the list of patients apparently includes a few members of the Dallas Cowboys and Houston Texans. Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott is the only player named so far to have tested positive for the Coronavirus. ... and he doesn't sound happy about the leak.
Elliott's agent, Rocky Arceneaux is the apparent source of the story and told NFL Network on Monday that Elliott was feeling OK and recovering.
After the report became public, Elliott took to his Twitter, suggesting that there was a leak of his patient information beyond the on-the-record comments from his agent.
Elliott's concern is that the source of the information, whoever he is assuming "leaked" the news, violated his HIPAA rights.
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) is a federal law that created national standards to protect sensitive patient health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent or knowledge.
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Who falls under the law? Health plans, Health care clearinghouses and most health care providers.
If someone from those entities first broke the story, they could be in for some serious punishment.
The maximum criminal penalty for a HIPAA violation by an individual is $250,000. Knowingly violating HIPAA Rules with malicious intent or for personal gain can result in a prison term of up to 10 years in jail.
CowboysSI.com received a pair of "no comments'' from team officials upon the initial release of the report - with both sources citing the aforementioned HIPAA laws.
Cowboys staffers were recently allowed inside team practice facilities but players are not yet officially allowed inside unless rehabbing.
The confirmed cases have opened the flood gates of questions regarding the NFL's preparedness and plans for handling positive Coronavirus cases throughout training camps and the season.