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Can emergency treatment be done to children without parental permission?


Alpo

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I had a dream in which this little kid - five or six years old - was attached by a vicious dog. And coming upon the scene I called 911, requesting the police and an ambulance. And animal control for the dead dog.

 

When I woke up I started to wonder whether the EMTs could do anything for this hypothetical non-existent little kid, because the kid is too young to give permission, and we didn't know who the parents were.

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There is a concept called 'implied consent'  unless otherwise directed life saving measures are given. 

 

If you choose to not give consent for treatment you don't get it. When you pass out it's implied you want lifesaving measures.

 

Nobody wants to get to the ER and hear 'we didn't save your baby cause nobody told us to.'

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Yes, EMS can act.

 

From: https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/pediatrics/128/2/427.full.pdf

 

Quote

Any time a minor is treated without consent, the burden of proof falls on the professional who is evaluating, treating, or transporting the child to justify and document that the emergency actions were necessary to prevent imminent and significant harm to the child. In addition to actions necessary to save a person’s life and prevent permanent dis- ability or harm, the treatment of fractures, infections, pain, and other conditions may broadly be considered as emergent conditions that require treatment. As a general rule, health care professionals should always do what they believe to be in the best interest of the minor. The emergency exception exists to protect the health care professional from liability with the assumption that if the parents were present, they would consent to treatment.

 

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2 hours ago, Alpo said:

I had a dream in which this little kid - five or six years old - was attached by a vicious dog. And coming upon the scene I called 911, requesting the police and an ambulance. And animal control for the dead dog.

 

When I woke up I started to wonder whether the EMTs could do anything for this hypothetical non-existent little kid, because the kid is too young to give permission, and we didn't know who the parents were.

 

Alpo,

 

What happens when a child is attached by a vicious dog?

 

Red Wolf

 

Just giving you a hard time, I'm sure otto is at it again.

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48 minutes ago, Widder, SASS #59054 said:

I think the EMS employees would treat the kid without parental permission under the 'Good Samaritan Law'.

 

..........Widder

 

Good Samaritan laws vary with every state but in NH at least GS applies if helping is not your job, thus EMS are not covered. Other laws cover them.

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My son is now a part time EMT, rather than full time. He has restrained and has had parents restrained so the child could be treated. I do not know all the details due to his following the laws about privacy. 

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27 minutes ago, Marshal Mo Hare, SASS #45984 said:

Good Samaritan laws vary with every state but in NH at least GS applies if helping is not your job, thus EMS are not covered. Other laws cover them.

In Georgia, the Good Samaritan laws covered you as long as health care was not your profession.  Health care professionals may even be covered in an emergency 1st aide situation where they are not billing the patient, such as a roadside accident.  Law enforcement officers fall under the Good Samaritan laws even though they have had some emergency medical training. 

 

Our hospitals would treat a child for life saving measures until they could contact a parent.  If no parent was available, they would contact law enforcement to "deprive the child" and turn them over to DFACS.  Parents still get the bill.

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Remember...there are certain groups of people, out there, that do not believe in doctors, or hospitals, or medicine.

You may run into them, at an emergency involving one of their children.

You may catch flak over it, from them.

I would do what was necessary, based on my training, and my oath, and worry about those kinds of things later...if at all.

You have to be able to go to bed, that night, and know you did the best you could, and tried the best you could.

 

Some things cannot wait to be thought out, pondered, discussed. Some things have to be acted upon immediately.

 

Good Samaritan laws, and if push comes to shove, the common sense (if there is such a thing, anymore) of the authorities/juries, will have to do.

 

It's too bad it has come to this.  

 

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1 hour ago, Red Wolf said:

 

Alpo,

 

What happens when a child is attached by a vicious dog?

 

Red Wolf

 

Just giving you a hard time, I'm sure otto is at it again.

The teeth locked around the spine, and the dog became attached.

 

:P

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I was a volunteer EMT for 9 years. If a child was sick or injured they were going to be treated and transported to definitive care, period. Worry about the legal stuff after the patient is safe.

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