Hospital Accuses Woman of Violating HIPAA Laws for Taking Photos of Son

Mercy Hospital allegedly detained a woman and ordered her to hand over her cell phone for taking photos of her son during a doctor’s appointment.

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A woman was detained and ordered to turn over her cell phone at Mercy Hospital for taking pictures of her son during a doctor’s appointment.

Mandi Kay Wilson often takes pictures of her son’s audiology appointments because she uses the images on to raise money for her son’s expensive hearing aids. At age seven, her son is going deaf, reports.

However, at her latest audiologist appointment, her doctor told her that taking photos of her son were a violation of HIPAA requirements.

Wilson claims the doctor got in her face and accused her of posting an image of the physician’s daughter on Facebook. However, Wilson says the image was a picture of her son and in the background was a small frame with the doctor’s daughter inside.

When Wilson went to clear up the issue with the director of the audiology department, she claims she was detained and separated from her son. Additionally, hospital officials told Wilson to hand over her phone and if she didn’t comply, she would be escorted off hospital property and charged with trespassing.

Mercy Hospital officials issued the following statement:

We regret the confusion that this situation caused and want to ensure that there is clarity for both our patients and our staff regarding appropriate use of personal photography and video within our facilities.  The policy is currently under review. The idea is not to prohibit patients from capturing personal memories. However, we want to ensure that we protect everyone’s right to privacy. That includes other patients, visitors, co-workers and providers who may not want to appear in someone else’s photograph, video or recording.

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