Clinic Victorious in Protecting the Privacy of Minor Patients
Indiana Attorney General Steve Carter and Planned Parenthood of Indiana signed a settlement agreement Thursday, ending almost two years of legal battles over the medical records of minor patients. Carter has agreed to return patient records his office obtained from Planned Parenthood and refrain from further record requests following a ruling from the Indiana Court of Appeals in September, which stated a minor’s right to privacy trumps the state’s desire to search for evidence of abuse. In March 2005, the Attorney General’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit attempted to seize the records of over 80 minor patients visiting Planned Parenthood clinics across the state for services including birth control, pregnancy tests, and counseling. At first Planned Parenthood surrendered partial records of eight patients to comply with the investigation, but sought an injunction when the unit expanded its request.