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April 7 (UPI) — Researchers at Michigan State University have found the personal data of patients may be at risk of data breaches in U.S. hospitals.

The study found nearly 1,800 incidences of large data breaches in patient information over a seven-year period from October 2009 to December 2016.

Researchers analyzed data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on data breaches at hospitals and healthcare providers. Hospitals covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPPA, are required by law to report data breaches affecting 500 or more patients within 60 days to the Department of Health and Human Services.

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