SA Health closes kids' data gap
SA Health says thousands of children's medical test results have been publicly available online for over a decade.
Data including the names, birth dates and test results for about 7,200 pathology tests was embedded in a document on the Women's and Children's Hospital website from 2005.
SA Health says it was removed in 2016, but was still available on other sites until last Thursday.
The patient information was contained in an academic presentation on childhood infections posted to the hospital's website in 2005.
The data was discovered by the father of one of the children, who used Google to search for his child's name.
“Our IT security team advise that the risk of anyone discovering the embedded information within the presentation is extremely low,” Women's and Children's executive director of corporate services Phil Robinson said.
“Once we were alerted to the error late Wednesday afternoon, we identified the nature of the information and contacted the website administrators who removed the presentation containing the data by Thursday afternoon.
“However, because the data was stored in a cache, it wasn't completely removed from the internet until late last night.
“We have no evidence to suggest that any of the information has been used inappropriately.
“I would like to apologise to those affected by this data error.”
SA Health says it will review all PowerPoint presentations in the public domain to ensure no more patient data has been inadvertently embedded.