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More Hospitals Ban Cameras in Delivery Room: Is It a Mother's Right?

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If it's your baby, do you have the right to take pictures and videotape upon arrival?

new born baby

Many hospital across the country are enforcing a new policy restricting photographs of births, which is causing mothers to fight back, according to a New York Times article. Hospitals are banning cameras and cell phones (many with picture-taking functionality) from emergency rooms to ensure the safety and health of patients, along with protecting the privacy of medical staff. But are medical malpractice suits the underlying reason?

We asked our Twitter followers what they thought about hospitals restricting cameras, and a surge of responses immediately fired back -- siding with both the hospital and the mother's side of the argument. Here's what you said ...

@Ehretha as an L&D nurse I agree with the ban- no cameras during the birth

@YUMMommies I say yay. Our hospital was quit to let us know cameras were not allowed during delivery. Sad u can't capture those memories.

@futuremrsdicko i think its rediculas you need to capture them moments there the most vital parts of parenting

@TheMcCaskieClan Ridiculous!as long as its not getting in the way of delivery the baby-why not?They create beautiful memories of a beautiful moment

@ChrisRFretwell I had a mandatory c-section - without the camera, there was lots I would have missed

@lilmommyp I don't think they should be banned I just think there should be rules as to what can and cannot be filmed. Its your time

@LoraandLayton I think it's ridiculous. Our bodies, our babies, our memories to capture! Which is why we set up a hidden camera when I gave birth!

@LRCoyle Disagree. The video of my birth was revolutionary at the time (1982) & I am elated my parents have it altho it's hard to watch.

@WellRoundedMama Lame. It is 100% motivated by malpractice fear. One more reason my next child will be born at home. (That & better food.)

@alccsp childbirth is not a spectator sport; our decision was unless needed medical staff or present at conception = "not birth observer"

@melaniemay79 it should be the family's decision...not the hospital's.

@mommatips Hospitals are protecting themselves by not allowing video, but it should be up to the mommy in labor & no one else!

What do you think about hospitals banning cameras in the emergency room? Tell us in the comments below or tweet us @momlogic.

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14 comments so far | Post a comment now
K8 February 7, 2011, 8:55 AM

Yes it’s a Parent’s right! And if the hospital staff get’s caught on tape doing something they shouldn’t, all the better!!!

denise February 7, 2011, 9:15 AM

Have the hospitals given any good reasons why they don’t allow cameras? Perhaps it is a terrorist threat? Saying that always seems to work when our rights are taken away.

L&Dnurse February 7, 2011, 9:20 AM

It’s not always the hospital’s decision. MANY physician’s malpractice policies require the ban on filming the actual delivery. Picture taking/filming is allowed once the doctor gives the “go ahead”. If this is an issue for you, you’ll want to find out before you choose your obstetrician.

Jay February 7, 2011, 10:01 AM

It is a parents right to capture the first moments of their baby’s life!

Rachel Humphrey February 7, 2011, 10:12 AM

I don’t think they should restrict camera or video use during YOUR delivery not theirs. But I can see why they wouldn’t want them. God for bid you get a picture of them doing something improperly and can prove it huh? But honestly if the mother is ok with pictures than the Dr. shouldn’t care as long as the person doing it isn’t in the way of them taking care of the patients… L&Dnurse they don’t say at certain points they say you can either have them the whole time or not at all. This allows them to also dismiss any pictures in court if they do something wrong, which is also wrong since you can see them even if they didn’t allow it.

Marie February 7, 2011, 11:35 AM

yeah it is all about liability. I used to work for a defense law firm and in terms of med mal, they would NEVER want a video, cuz you can’t mess with it. It is what it is. you can’t remove written pages or evidence like you can with documents. Really sad…

Renee Malove February 7, 2011, 1:43 PM

READ THE ARTICLE CAREFULLY! THE HEADLINE DOESN’T MATCH UP! The article states that the cameras are being banned in the EMERGENCY ROOM, which I find to be perfectly reasonable when you’ve got HUNDREDS OF PATIENTS AND STAFF that could be photographed. Do you want to be the one to air the guy with the missing arm screaming on FB? Or the nurse hiding out from her abusive ex that works in the ER? YOU will probably not be the only person seeing these pictures, and most of these people are strangers who don’t want you taking their pictures when they’re at their most vulnerable. Put the camera in your pocket until you hit the DELIVERY ROOM, most L&D units allow pictures as long as you stay out of their way when they’re doing their jobs.

PLEASE read this article before accusing docs of a giant conspiracy theory. They’re not trying to deprive you of a wonderful moment, they’re just trying to protect the privacy of their patients. If you were in the hallway of the ER sick as a dog and some guy came in with a video tape and caught you on camera, you’d appreciate a doc telling him to put it away too.

mom 2 b February 7, 2011, 4:52 PM

Way to start a mass hysteria, momlogic. Title says more cameras banned in DELIVERY room, article says more cameras banned in EMERGENCY room. That’s a bit of a conflict… soooo…. why the duplicity? Are y’all that hard up for readers you have to lie to make us read the article?

Anonymous February 7, 2011, 6:54 PM

Renee and mom 2 be win.

Mrs. Pink February 7, 2011, 11:24 PM

Totally depends on the hospital AND the staff that is in the room. When you are spread eagle on a hospital bed, there really isnt any shame left anymore, like wise if you are going to have a c-section. The mood was so carefree, that I am sure I could have had pizza delivered and no one would have cared. Although, when dh “took a peek”, it was priceless to see how wide his eyes got…now THAT I would have liked to record/take a pic of.

Mrs. Pink

Amy February 8, 2011, 6:35 AM

Boo for mom logic.

Since you asked, I 100% agree with the ban on cameras in ERs, that should have happened a long time ago. What does this have to do with photos during birth?

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