Law professor Dan Solove writes:
Whenever there’s a story these days about an emergency 911 call, the call is often disclosed to the public. Recently, there was news of yet another public disclosure of a 911 call, this time a call by a woman who witnessed the suicide of Marie Osmond’s son.
I’ve long thought that the public disclosure of 911 calls violates the privacy of the callers. Many 911 calls involve people calling for medical reasons, and matters about their physical or mental health are discussed in the call. Doctors and nurses are under a duty of confidentiality, so why not 911 call centers, especially when people are revealing medical information?
The call about Osmond’s son was by a witness. But suppose a person who attempted suicide called 911 and asked for an ambulance. This would reveal highly sensitive medical information about the person and the fact the person attempted suicide.
Read more on Concurring Opinions.