The Privacy of a Mother's Medical Information: A Correct Reading of El-Amin v. Dempsey
Chicago, Illinois May 30, 2012 Business News(PRLEAP.COM) The Chicago personal injury law firm, Clifford Law Offices, released an article by Sarah F. King: "The Privacy of a Mother's Medical Information…" (http://www.cliffordlaw.com).
In medical negligence cases involving an infant plaintiff, access to a mother's medical records is often a hotly contested issue. In cases involving an injury near the time of birth defense attorneys feel entitled to obtain medical records pertaining to the care rendered during the pregnancy and labor and delivery, despite a mother's invocation of the physician-patient privilege and her right to privacy. Too often defendants will attempt to distort the scope of the issues being litigated through bogus infection-causation defenses and suggestions that the plaintiff's injuries are due to genetic origins. In stark contrast, plaintiff's attorneys oppose the use and disclosure of a mother's records based on a desire to maintain her physician-privilege and protect her privacy in cases where the complaint has not affirmatively placed her medical condition before delivery "at issue."
A determination of whether the privilege has been waived for a mother's prenatal and labor and delivery records is inextricably linked to the issues being raised on behalf of the infant plaintiff. The bottom line - absent explicit waiver by pursuing a claim for obstetrical negligence on behalf of the infant or discovery responses, a mother's medical information, including her prenatal, labor and delivery records, remains privileged. This article written by Sarah F. King, associate at Clifford Law Offices in Chicago, provides a review of the relevant case law on this issue, including an in depth look at the First District's opinion in El-Amin v. Dempsey.
About Clifford Law Offices
Clifford Law Offices is ranked one of the top Chicago law firms. Our personal injury law firm concentrates in complex personal injury litigation such as for wrongful death, medical malpractice, product liability, premises negligence and transportation liability, including car-truck collisions, train accidents and aviation litigation.
Pamela S. Menaker
Clifford Law Offices
Clifford Law Offices