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Thread: name release

  1. #1
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    Default name release

    Question:
    Does anyone have policies on releasing names of patients or complaints over the airways? IE:- PD Officer requests name of complaintant, EMS Unit requesting pt name.
    Thanks
    CJ


  2. #2
    Forum Member kghemtp's Avatar
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    With regards to EMS, confidentiality comes into play. This was a major concern LONG before HIPAA got thrown into the mix. A sketchy situation I notice sometimes in the smaller towns is when dispatch gives the address as 32 XYZ Rd, the Smith residence, for a 71 year old male experiencing ABC. I am doubtful any department will provide SOP's that allow such transmissions.

    On the other hand, use of names for license checks and APB's in the police side of communications is quite predominant from what I hear. That all tends to be stuff that could be found as public knowledge (Name, DOB, Address).

    ~Kevin
    FF/Paramedic

  3. #3
    Forum Member MrJim911's Avatar
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    EMS - Don't give names out!!

    Police - Names are given out all the time by both sides and it's fine to do so.

  4. #4
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    There is an individual in our community who lives in a homeless shelter type facility that calls for an ambulance on a regular basis for lots of different things. The police are usually dispatched on these calls since he has been suicidal in the past. When they dispatch medical they do not use names however they dispatch PD at the same time to “assist medical” and they almost always give the name.

  5. #5
    Forum Member MrJim911's Avatar
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    Probably because the police are familiar with the subject from dealing with him so many times. By telling the officer who it is your giving them a heads up as to what to expect, because they know who he is and how he acts from past dealings with him.

  6. #6
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    A sketchy situation I notice sometimes in the smaller towns is when dispatch gives the address as 32 XYZ Rd, the Smith residence, for a 71 year old male experiencing ABC.
    In my area, we at the dispatch center almost always give the last name of the residence. Its almost to the point if we dont give the name, they ask for it. This helps in locating the house's which in a rural setting are not always marked with the street address. As for patient confidentiality if it comes between locating the patient in a timely manner or not I would take the last name.

    Just my two cents.

  7. #7
    Forum Member MrJim911's Avatar
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    Good point, but that's a training issue. The responders should be taught to find addresses by using addresses, not last names.

  8. #8
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    We have a rural addressing system is really easy to work through. Our county is divided in almost perfect mile sections. Only exception is when you get around some of the rural communities. When they first started the system I was not a dispatcher for this county. But I was a FF and EMT at the time. As part of my training I had to be able to show proficiency in reading the maps and finding locations. We weren't allowed to ask the name on the residence. We were expected to look up the address. All of our trucks and POV's had maps in them to find any location in the county. They are the same maps the dispatchers use.

    So now that I am a dispatcher and being a former FF/EMT, it really chaps my hide when the EMT and Fire agencies ask for the name on a residence! They just want the name so they don't have to look up the acutal address. I figure that I had to learn the addressing system as a FF/EMT so should they!


    We will give the name that is on the 911 screen IF they ask for it. There are some agencies I can always plan on asking for the name. So far we can still give the chief complaint and anything that is related to scene safety over the radio. Other than those things we don't give any other information over the radio unless it pertains directly to the call.
    As for officers we will give the first name of the person they are to meet with on a call. About the only time our officers ask for a last name is when they are responding a domestic or something along those lines.
    Hey You!!! Out of the gene pool!!!

  9. #9
    Forum Member Weruj1's Avatar
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    per a National EMS Law firms EMS teleconference I sat in on last Thursday, dispatch falls under the HIPAA part of treatment. The lawyers prefered NOT to use names but since you dont need anyones permission for treatment, you can technically give it. At the service I work for full time we dont EVER give out names (we are urban/county) dispatch EMS only agency). Where I am the Asst Fire Chief, we also tell our dispatchers not to give us names , and every once in a while you do need to ask as there are some streets that a broken up and sometimes you cant remember where addresses are separated.
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