My hypothetical

Bill O'Neill
Thu Aug 11 19:47:11 EDT 2005

Dave Faneuf wrote:

>Regardless of criminal liability I would think it would certainly be
>within the realm of possiblity that a successful civil suit might be
>filed depending upon the information gathered and withheld and whether or
>not it could have reasonably prevented the catastrophic event.
I would think that would be very likely. Not to mention how career 
limiting such a move would be, heavy conscience notwithstanding.  I'm a 
mandated reporter on two fronts, as a counselor and as an EMT, as it 
would pertain to suspicion of abuse of a child, elderly, disabled. But 
that is a different situation altogether. 

In early EMS trainings, scenarios were floated such as assisting a 
patient in his room where illegal substances may be present but not in 
plain view and not contributing to the injury. In such a case, an EMT is 
ethically expected to not volunteer that information with legal 
authorities who may have overlooked the substance. Not something I hope 
to ever be faced with. 

The hypothetical Dave constructs leads me to think that something of 
such grand scale that it could even rise to a national security issue 
would make sweeps week never get to happen.  File under: If there's no 
one to listen and the diaries all melt-down, is it still worthy of a 
Fourth Estate ataboy?

Bill O'Neill

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