The Health Services Authority has suspended its entire Information Technology Department, placing them on half-pay, as auditors investigate what has been described as a possible security breach of the authority’s information systems.
The authority released a short statement Tuesday after receiving questions on the matter from the Caymanian Compass. It did not state the nature of the investigation but claimed there is no evidence that the confidentiality of patient electronic records has been compromised.
‘While the investigations are being carried out employees in our IT Technical department have been placed on administrative leave,’ the statement said.
‘The Authority wishes to make it clear that these actions, which are part of standard business practices, are necessary to allow the investigations to proceed in an unbiased manner and to preserve the integrity of the process.’
HSA Public Relations Officer Caswell Walford said HSA policy dictates that staff placed on administrative leave are given 50 per cent of their salary until the investigation is complete.
‘We strive to resolve these issues quickly so staff may return to duty as soon as possible. Any staff member returned to duty will have full reimbursement of their wages,’ he said.
Mr. Walford refused to say how many employees have been suspended. ‘This investigation is an internal administrative HR process and it is not our policy to discuss such matters with the media,’ he wrote in an emailed response to questions from the Compass.
The authority said it had engaged an external agency to carry out the investigation, although the Compass understands the investigation is actually being carried out by Government’s Computer Services Department, who will also provide run the HSA’s IT systems while the investigation is carried out.