HIPPA and Parents of Minors - page 4

by vintagemother

I'm a prenursing student and a mom. A friend of mine just was told that due to new HIPPA laws, she could not go into the physical exam room with her 12 year old son. Is this a new law? Or did the person at the Doctor's office... Read More


  1. 0
    I think it would be very rare for a provider to proceed with a physical exam of a teenage boy if the boy tells them he is uncomfortable with his mother in the room.

    Since you are attaching your posts to old threads nobody has commented on in a year, and the threads aren't exactly what you experienced maybe you would get better responses if you start your own thread about your concerns.
  2. 3
    There is both state laws and there should be facility policy on the treatment of teenagers. Most are age based and state that a teenager can be treated without a parent in the room. They have specific rights to privacy. But all of the treatment team need to be on the same page about it. Then that gives the nurse the support to say to parent "If you would excuse us, I will come and get you in a few minutes after your son has his exam, then you can speak to the doctor". If you have the support to set boundries, set them.
    If your facility has no such plan in place then do what you can to ensure privacy. Have the boy change into a gown in the bathroom. Insure that the young man is covered with a sheet so the doctor can use that to just expose what is needed away from the parent. Most parents are pretty savvy in the thought process of their teenagers will tell the nurse and the doctor the whole truth. If given the opportunity to filter the information the parent receives. And that the MD and nurse will educate the child and hopefully it will sink in better than if a parent lectures. We all want our kids to be safe and make good choices. If a parent feels that their teenager is engaging in unprotected sex, drugs, ETOH---we already know this even if we don't want to admit it, and need to rethink a parenting style that works. The goal would be to have the child be in a clinical setting and educated accordingly, not to get the scoop to fufill some ulterior motive.
    As a sexual abuse survivor, it sometimes makes one hyper aware and instinctive in the thought process that sexualize a great deal of things. It is important to remember that most parent's intentions are good ones.
    unclebda, Altra, and r.dav like this.
  3. 1
    I worked in an office with pediatric and adult pts, and you'd be surprised how many times the parent would stay sitting in the waiting room until I told them to come on back, or would look at me and ask if they could go back with their child. I'd always say YES because the kid doesn't know their medication history, allergies, and most kids, especially teenagers, will just say "I've been okay" when the nurse is trying to get their H&P. I can understand asking parents to step out for certain questions, to get accurate answers and info. Our office did allergy testing so I'd have the parents step out if the child/teenager was taking their shirt off and putting the ugly gown on, but for the actual procedure I'd insist on mom or dad being in the room.

    I took my oldest to a pediatric dentist when he was 6 and they showed us both the office, then had me in the main waiting room with the other parents. Parents and kids are brought back to a small consultation room, where the dentist gets the H&P and explains what will happen. Parents go back to the main waiting room and kids are brought back to a different waiting room filled with games, TVs, toys, etc to relax them. Once the kid has relaxed then they're brought back for the dental exam. Parents are brought to the consultation room and updated periodically.
    unclebda likes this.
  4. 0
    From a strict legal perspective, I'd be very curious to see how it would pan out in court if hospital staff physically kept a parent from a minor during an exam without probable cause that something is wrong. I'm thinking a crafty parent, a lawyer, and a fickle adolescent could trump up something close to kidnapping.

    I do see the benefits of seperating the two at certain times and for certain reasons, but I'd be darn sure that other prudent nurses and staff saw it the same way if there was a conflict with a parent. It seems like it should be more of a suggestion with obvious benefits than a law to adhere to.
  5. 0
    They can only be separated during visits for sexual problems and birth control. Other than that, parent must be present.
  6. 0
    Quote from LVN Pam
    They can only be separated during visits for sexual problems and birth control. Other than that, parent must be present.
    Must have a standby present.


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