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Does a mother and siblings have the right to know medical information on critically ill family member?

Middleburg, KY |

I am a critical care nurse and I do know these laws. But I am asking as a sister, who has a brother that is in critical care. His wife has no medical knowledge, nor any of his children. His wife has been verbally abusive to my mother, myself and all family members on our side. First as a nurse I have questioned why Social Services was never called in on the case. I know he is an adult, but when a person becomes so sick that they can not physically take care of themself and there is 5-6 adults in the house you would think someone would call 911 or have taken him to a ER. I am mainly the one she had started cussing in the nursing area where my brother was in CCU at the time. I have never had words or any problems with her in the past. It's made us all wondering what she is hiding.

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Attorney answers 3

Best Answer
Posted

You certainly have the right to call social services yourself - but it is unlikely to improve relations with your sister-in-law.

From your background I'm sure you know that these are often really rough situations where everyone involved tends to not act like "themselves" because of grief and anxiety. You might be able to help your sister-in-law and your brother more than you realize if you can build a little trust. Good luck.

This response is intended to provide general information, but not legal advice. The response may be different if there are other or different facts than those included in the original question. See MKnutsonLaw.com for more information on why this communication is not privileged or create an attorney-client relationship.

Posted

Not unless your brother has given his authorization for you to act in this capacity. Generally, it is the spouse that gets to make the call.

I am licensed in California, therefore, my answers are based on general prinicpals of law or California law, which may not be applicable in your jurisdiction. Answers posted to Avvo are for general information only. Do not conclusively rely on any information posted online when deciding what to do about your case. Every case depends is fact dependent, and responses are limited to and is based on the information you posted. No attorney-client relationship shall be created through the use reading of this response on Avvo. You should never delay seeking legal advice, disregard legal advice, or commence or discontinue any legal action because of information in this response.

Posted

Mr. Patrick is correct.

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