Will Giants player’s medical record Tweet lead to action against hospital, ESPN?

07/10/2015 // JusticeNewsFlash // (press release)

New York – A debate has ensued over whether the privacy rights of New York Giant’s player Jason Pierre-Paul were violated with the release of his surgical record on social media. An image of his hospital record was Tweeted by an ESPN reporter on Wednesday providing evidence to support claims that his fingers had been amputated as a result of a fireworks injury. According to a WFAN report, one legal analyst suggests that the action could have been a violation of Pierre-Paul’s privacy rights.

Sports Illustrated legal analyst Michael McCann recently stated of the issue during an interview, “My first thought was somebody broke HIPAA… Unless Pierre-Paul consented to disclosing that photo — and even the medical information, but especially the photo — ESPN shouldn’t have it.”

ESPN has sense said in a short media statement that HIPPA, or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, which includes provisions to protect the confidentiality of medical patients “does not apply to news organizations.”

McCann further said of the issue, “I think the government will investigate what took place at the hospital where he’s been staying to see who had access to those records, who could have disclosed them.

“There could be a request to ESPN and Adam Schefter to provide information as to how he obtained these records. He doesn’t have to cooperate; he could be subpoenaed. It could become a dicey situation … it could raise some interesting issues about the rights of a reporter versus the rights of the person that the reporter is investigating.”

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