Going nowhere? Why?
Bill HB 1494 has been proposed to address the relationship between individuals and their medical providers, prohibiting the disclosure to government entities of certain information, relating to a patient’s ownership of a firearm. HB 1494 appears to be of minimal concern to elected Members, and of even less concern to the media and endangered Hoosiers.
Status thus far:
01/14/2015 Authored by Representative Judy
01/14/2015 Coauthored by Representatives Lucas, VanNatter and Morris
01/14/2015 First Reading: referred to Committee on Public Policy
Why should such a bill be necessary?
Is it because government entities are already exercising the power?
What right does a physician or medical records custodian have to require a patient to disclose gun ownership information? What right does a political subdivision or any government have to require a practitioner to inquire whether a patient owns a firearm? What right does any government have to obtain absent due process to any private confidential doctor-patient records?
HB 1494 adds a new section to the code. The need to define the limits of disclosure should indicate the importance of such legislation. This bill would prohibit a practitioner or medical records custodian from disclosing information pertaining to a patient’s ownership or access to a firearm, to government entities at all levels. It also prohibits a political subdivision or regulating board from requiring the practitioner to inquire and document if a patient owns a firearm and from notifying any government entity of the identity of any patient solely due to ownership of a firearm.
Further prohibition includes: “Use an electronic medical record program that requires, in order to complete and save a medical record, entry of data regarding whether a patient: owns a firearm; has access to a firearm; or lives in a home containing a firearm.”
Once again, I find myself wondering why, since both Amendment 4 of the U.S. Constitution and Indiana Constitution: “Section 11. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable search or seizure, shall not be violated; and no warrant shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person or thing to be seized.” This bill is not being given the import due to bring current government policy into compliance with the Constitution(s).
I would propose that this bill contain a definition such as: “Medical records has the meaning of papers and effects secure against unreasonable search and seizure and as such are a protected Right under the Indiana state Constitution Section 11 and the U.S. Constitution Amendment 4.” But, such a definition would likely be opposed by government entities seeking easy access to gun ownership.
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