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A legal guide to body-worn cameras for EMS agencies

In partnership with legal firm Page, Wolfberg & Wirth, the NEMSIS TAC created a quickstart guide for legal considerations for EMS agencies

By Jessie Forand

SALT LAKE CITY — From HIPAA standards to public perception, the issue of body-warn cameras is nothing new, but for EMS agencies, there are many items to consider when exploring adding the equipment to gear lineups.

A new guide, “EMS Body-worn Camera Quickstart Guide: Legal Considerations for EMS Agencies,” developed by the National Emergency Medical Services Information System Technical Assistance Center (NEMSIS TAC), with legal firm Page, Wolfberg & Wirth, was created to provide an overview of the issues surrounding body cameras in EMS.

[Read more: How-to-buy body-worn cameras]

Body-worn cameras can assist EMS workers in documenting patients’ real-time conditions, elevating quality of care and promoting practitioner accountability. The quick start guide offers a legal perspective of the devices.

The guide educates agencies on a variety of issues related to body-worn cameras, including:

  • Invasion of privacy laws
  • Wiretapping and eavesdropping laws
  • Open records laws
  • Data retention requirements
  • Policy creation
  • Federal HIPAA standards

Read the full quick start guide to body-worn cameras below: