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Notice and Frequently Asked Questions about a recent laptop theft

Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford and the Stanford University School of Medicine are notifying patients by mail that a password-protected laptop computer containing limited medical information on pediatric patients was stolen from a physician’s car away from campus on the night of January 9, 2013. The medical information on the stolen laptop was predominantly from 2009 and related to past care and research.

Immediately following discovery of the theft, Packard Children’s and the School of Medicine notified law enforcement and internal security and launched an aggressive investigation, which is still under way. There is no indication that any patient information has been accessed or compromised.
What medical information was on the laptop?
The information did not include financial or credit card information, nor did it contain Social Security numbers or any other marketable information. It did include names and dates of birth, basic medical descriptors, and medical record numbers, which are used only by the hospital to identify patients. In some cases, there was limited contact information.

How many patients were potentially affected?
We are providing outreach to approximately 57,000 patients, and we are assuring they are notified promptly.
How are potentially affected individuals being notified?
In addition to the mailed letters, a phone line has been established to answer any questions for those notified. The toll-free number is (855) 731-6016, and is available Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. PST. In addition, potentially affected individuals have been offered the option of free identity protection services.

How is the investigation proceeding?

We continue working diligently with law enforcement to recover the laptop.

Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital and the School of Medicine strive to be industry leaders in the area of medical information security. As a result of this incident, we are taking additional steps to further strengthen our policies and controls surrounding the protection of patient data.

News Release:  Medical Center Report


About Stanford University School of Medicine

The Stanford University School of Medicine consistently ranks among the nation’s top medical schools, integrating research, medical education, patient care and community service. For more news about the school, please visit The medical school is part of Stanford Medicine, which includes Stanford Health Care and Stanford Children’s Health. For information about all three, please visit

About Stanford Children’s Health

Stanford Children’s Health, with Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital Stanford at its center, is the Bay Area’s largest health care system exclusively dedicated to children and expectant mothers. Our network of care includes more than 65 locations across Northern California and more than 85 locations in the U.S. Western region. As part of Stanford Medicine, a leading academic health system that also includes Stanford Health Care and Stanford University School of Medicine, we are cultivating the next generation of medical professionals and are at the forefront of scientific research to improve children’s health outcomes around the world. We are a nonprofit organization committed to supporting the community through meaningful outreach programs and services and providing necessary medical care to families, regardless of their ability to pay. Discover more at