Sunday, February 07, 2010

Bellevue Hospital and Patient Abuse

A woman kills her 8 yo son and attempts suicide in a room at the Peninsula (a Midtown hotel). The Daily News reports the story and assorted people offer more or less appropriate comments. Nothing out of the ordinary so far.

And then you notice the picture accompanying the story and you have to wonder: what is wrong with the Daily News and, more importantly, with Bellevue Hospital?

Nothing in this story justifies publishing a picture of an inpatient. And nothing, ever justifies a hospital allowing--knowingly or due to incompetence--its patients to be abused in this manner.

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At 6:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

As someone who worked at Bellevue Hospital for 35 years, I can assure you that this photograph was not sanctioned by the hospital. When high profile patients are admitted, media think nothing of sneaking in to try and find the patient room and photograph. The hospital works very hard to protect patients from this but it is not an armed camp. If someone really is intent on doing this, there is almost no way to stop them. In the past we had hospital police tackle reporters and photographers and arrest them for trespassing. With new cell phone technology it is quite difficult to know who is a member of the media.

At 11:34 PM, Blogger ema said...

Anon, thank you for sharing your insight. I actually think Bellevue is a very good hospital so I was quite perturbed that such a gross breach of patient confidentiality was allowed.

Mind you, when I say "allowed" I mostly have in mind their second line of defense, if you will, the PR and hospital counsel/s. Bellevue has enough funds to mount a vigorous PR campaign denouncing and condemning the Daily News for publishing the pic and going after the newspaper/the person who took the pic in a court of law.


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