Veteranclaims’s Blog

June 2, 2011

Veterans Medical Records Destroyed at El Centro Family Health, New Mexico

Full article at: Veterans’ Records Illegally Destroyed

By Andrew Kasper
SUN Staff Writer

Thursday, June 2, 2011 10:07 AM MDT
“The health records of hundreds of Northern New Mexico veterans were mishandled and illegally destroyed three years ago, and the federal Veteran’s Affairs Department failed to notify the veterans or their families until this year.

Denise Burd, a former records custodian for El Centro Family Health working under contract, said she disposed of 455 veterans’ health records at her Chimayó home when she believed they were due for destruction.

By state law, most health records become inactive after a patient is not seen by a doctor for three years and can be destroyed 10 years after that. However, under federal law, veterans’ health records must be stored for 75 years before being destroyed. There were also certain procedures explicit in the contract between El Centro and the Department for how and where the records must be stored, which were violated by when the records were stored at Burd’s home.”

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