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Entries in patient privacy (2)


Banning Cameras at Birth

I'm sure most of us have already weighed in on Meritus Medical Center's ban on cameras (of any kind) in labor and delivery, allowed to turn on no earlier than five minutes after the birth.

"On Nov. 1, Meritus Medical Center implemented a policy prohibiting video, film and still photography of deliveries until five minutes after birth. The change is intended to protect patient privacy and reduce potential staff distractions, said Jody Bishop, administrative director of the department that includes the hospital's birthing center."

They go on to blah blah blah about patient safety -"The intent is for the physicians and midwives and staff to be able to focus on the delivery itself and on the safety of the mom and baby."

Yeah, like anyone believes that.

Today, I finally read an article that included commentary by a medical malpractice attorney. Brian McKeen says (on ABCnews.com):

"There's no question in my mind or in the minds of other colleagues who I've worked with on the obstetrical side that hospitals are doing this so as not to have a piece of evidence generated that can be used against them in a court of law," McKeen told ABC World News. "They do it to hide the truth."

"...video and photos from a delivery can help in deciding a medical malpractice case.

"It may show that the physician complied with the standard care and engaged in all the appropriate maneuvers, or it may show the physician did not engage in the appropriate maneuvers and or used excessive force and caused the birth injury," he said.

McKeen said that if a patient isn't permitted to photograph or videotape a birth when they want to, they should find another doctor.

I agree.

While I suspect most people don't want to be filmed while they work, I'd venture a guess to say most people are taped on their jobs. Might being taped change one's behavior? Isn't that something many/most of us would like to see in hospital births?

Can you imagine?!

Obstetric violence would plummet. Strong-arming would virtually disappear. Snotty comments would be replayed on YouTube.

Women might actually be treated humanely.

Imagine that.


(small) Pet Peeve: HIPAA

It it's HIPAA, not HIPPA.

Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.

"The HIPAA Privacy Rule provides federal protections for personal health information held by covered entities and gives patients an array of rights with respect to that information. At the same time, the Privacy Rule is balanced so that it permits the disclosure of personal health information needed for patient care and other important purposes. 

The Security Rule specifies a series of administrative, physical, and technical safeguards for covered entities to use to assure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of electronic protected health information."

Thanks for listening.