Incident Photo's - food for thought

Status
Not open for further replies.

Moosemedic

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jun 28, 2003
Messages
216
Location
Denver
Paramedic fired over photos; appealing to board publicly tonight

BY ANDRELL BOWER, News Reporter
Published: Friday, October 6, 2006 1:30 PM CDT
E-mail this story | Print this page




KIRKSVILLE - A paramedic suspended without pay after posting photos of an ATV and bus wreck on the Internet was fired Thursday, one day before a hearing with the Adair County Ambulance District board.

Chris Drennan, who worked for ACAD for 11 years, was suspended Sept. 15 because administration alleged the photos he posted on the Internet of a bloodied school bus and wrecked ATV violated the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 and ACAD policy. He is scheduled for a hearing Friday at 7 p.m. at the ACAD office on 606 W. Potter Ave.

The termination notice written by ACAD Chief Jason Albert dropped the HIPAA allegations but stated Drennan did not obtain "proper authorization" from ACAD or "proper written authorization" from the patient to publish photos of the scene and comments related to the condition of 13-year-old Zach Reeves, who was injured in the accident. The notice also states that Drennan's screen name, which uses the ACAD acronym, indicated he was speaking on behalf of the ambulance district when he made the posts.

Albert acknowledged in an interview today he did not believe the photos and comments violated HIPAA, as originally stated in the Sept. 15 suspension letter.

"His posting photos violated ambulance district policy," he said. "The employees at ACAD are forbidden from distributing personal or confidential information regarding patients at any time."

According to the ACAD employee manual, the ambulance district refuses to release confidential information to outside sources without the patient's written authorization.


Drennan obtained a consent form from Reeves' father on Sept. 5 to publish the photos.

But Albert, who spoke with the teen's mother during the ambulance district's investigation into the alleged violations, said Drennan did not obtain consent prior to publishing the photos, which were posted Sept. 3.




Drennan said he did not talk with Albert before posting photos because he believes the photos are his property and are not confidential information.
 

iMONITOR

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Sep 20, 2006
Messages
8,834
I would think if the photos did not show any "people" involved, and only vehicles, and no license plates, or other personally identifying marks, it would be ok. If people are involved, he would be required to have what they call a Model Releases.

On the issue of his employer's policies, I think he's fighting a loosing battle.
 

captaincraig44

Member
Premium Subscriber
Joined
Jan 19, 2003
Messages
809
Location
Arvada
Since the photos are not for profit or personal gain, there is no legal requirement for model release. Such photos would fall under the classification of "editorial", which is the same reason that newspapers do not need model releases for photos they publish.

Now, I do agree that if your employer has a policy about not taking/publishing photos of incidents you are taking part in, then why would you do that, and if called on it, why fight it when you have no ground to stand on? That's just irresponsibility in not knowing your employers policies, or knowingly violating them.
 

abqscan

DataBase Administrator
Moderator
Joined
Dec 8, 2002
Messages
2,737
Location
AOA
This thread belongs in the Taven. Its not about anything in Colorado and nothing to do with Communications. -Thread Closed!
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top