Much of the coverage of this incident at a hospital in Utah write of ‘recent changes’ in the law concerning drawing blood, but that, as far as I can tell, was a year ago. Is that a recent change? Certainly not changed by an obscure agency or executive order.
Perhaps this kind of optic will help drive home the need for a less fear based police protocols, or even explaining why the need is there in this situation. It also appears to present distinct feelings of helplessness in many of the players, and with hospital staff knowing the culture of exacting HIPA rules. Since it is emotions that often drive concern, is this a useful optic and in what way? It certainly impacted nurses that I know.
ABA Journal June 23, 2016
States may not prosecute suspected drunken drivers for refusing warrantless blood draws when they are arrested, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in a 7-1 opinion on Thursday that found such tests violate the Fourth Amendment.
The majority opinion (PDF) by Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr. held that states may, however, require a warrantless breath test incident to arrest because such tests are less intrusive. That portion of Alito’s opinion was joined by five other justices.
“We conclude that the Fourth Amendment permits warrantless breath tests incident to arrests for drunk driving,” Alito wrote. “The impact of breath tests on privacy is slight, and the need for [blood-alcohol concentration] testing is great. We reach a different conclusion with respect to blood tests. Blood tests are significantly more intrusive, and their reasonableness must be judged in light of the availability of the less invasive alternative of a breath test.”
(Dan here…the video is below the fold)