Exclusives
FacebookTwitterLinkedInGoogle+RSS Feed
Fire EMSEMS TodayEMS Insider

Patient Privacy Revisited

1Wk5Heightman-spears-start

JEMS.com Editor_s Note: Just a month after„A.J. Heightman, MPA, EMT-P, Editor-in-Chief, JEMS, wrote an article about patient privacy sparked by the difficult transport of a famous singer in„Los Angeles, the singer was transported again. This new incident shows exceptional control by all the emergency agencies involved. Law enforcement clearly establishes a no-access zone, allowing the emergency crews to protect the privacy of their patient and work unimpeded by the press. These high-profile cases exhibit the type of pre-planning that should occur and be implemented with not just high-profiled patients but also high-profile events, such as special events, MCIs and structure fires, where the uninvolved public and the media can converge en masse and disrupt operations and the privacy of patients.„Click here for a video of the newest transport.

Britney Spears was treated and transported by„Los Angeles„City paramedics around 10:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 3,„after officers had found her under the influence of an unknown substance when they responded to a reported child custody dispute. Spears was involved in a stand-off with ex-husband Kevin Federline's bodyguard, who had attempted to retrieve her two children Sean Preston, 2, and Jayden James, 1. Celebrity news websites USmagazine.com, CelebTV and TMZ.com reported that the drama began when Spears failed to hand her two children over as arranged under a court-ordered custody agreement with Federline. The ambulance arrived on scene shortly after, and the two children were turned over to Federline after police reviewed court documents.

Video footage and pictures of the incident shown on celebrity news Web sites showed a smiling Spears and paramedics attempting to shield her from the paparazzi that followed the ambulance to a nearby hospital.

View the swarm of paparazzi that LA City paramedics and firefighters had to contend with on scene, en route to the hospital and on arrival at the emergency department by checking out the„video on the JEMS.com home page. Click on the following link and check out„"BRITNEY„HOSPITALIZED!"„(Click here to view video)(Click here to view a second video)

Spears has sold more than 76 million records worldwide, and her 31 million albums sold in the U.S. make her the eighth best-selling female artist in U.S. music history. We live in the YouTube and TMZ.com generation with paparazzi hungry for celebrity footage. Therefore,„EMS agencies should pre-plan ways to protect the privacy of all patients, not just celebrities, while the patients are in the patient compartment of the ambulance. Photographers will use any access point (front, rear and side windows and patient compartment doors) to get images that will reap them a significant pay check for the captured images.

Maintaining Patient Privacy

My father, a 35-year veteran ambulance officer with the„Scranton (Pa.) Fire Department, installed inexpensive, rolled-up vinyl "curtains" above each patient compartment window and secured in the rolled up position by two small snap-on straps. (Vinyl was used because it was easier than cloth to wipe down and keep clean.)„When the need for privacy arose, such as during the delivery of a baby in the ambulance patient compartment while en route to a hospital, his crews simply unsnapped the rolled-up vinyl curtains over the rear doors and they would fall into place and obstruct the view of anyone standing outside or following the ambulance to the hospital.

---

Do your ambulances have push-button privacy windows?„Cast your vote in the poll at the bottom right-hand side of the„JEMS.com homepage.

RELATED ARTICLES

Pro Bono: Privacy within Mass Casualty Incidents

HIPAA compliancy in MCIs is challenging but feasible.

Pro Bono: Complying with OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogen Standard

Does your agency comply?

Know When and How Your Patient Can Legally Refuse Care

Refusal of care straddles the intersection of ethical, legal and scientific domains of prehospital practice.

Pro Bono: Documenting Patient Refusals

Obtaining a signature is only the start of accepting refusal.

Gordon Graham Presents on Making the Right Decisions in the Fast-Paced World of EMS at EMS Today 2015

Gordon Graham, a 33-year veteran of California law enforcement, cautioned anyone can make a good decision when there is time to think things through. What do...

Gordon Graham Presents on Important Points about Background Investigations at EMS Today 2015

Gordon Graham, a 33-year veteran of California law enforcement, discussed his theories of how to maximize the effectiveness of pre-hiring protocols, all with...

Features by Topic

JEMS Connect

CURRENT DISCUSSIONS

 
 

EMS BLOGS

Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

Featured Careers