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Who should pay for damages?

Burr Ridge, Illinois
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Who should pay for damages?

Tonight I was relaxing (sound asleep) in First Class on Alaskan Air to Seattle when a guy nearby needed medical attention. The plane was 2 hours out of HNL on the longest route with no alternative airports.

For his life and safety the flight was returned to HNL.

An entire 737 is inconvenienced. In some cases unable to get home for two days.

Who should pay for the inconvenience and hotel, car rental costs. One girl was in tears as she was stuck two nights with no hotel. The airline has paid a fortune for fuel, man hours, etc. etc. The 150+ individuals are inconvenienced and perhaps pushed over budget. The person just got sick, right?

What do TA members think?

Now, a twist. The sick patient was a medical doctor who had consumed at least 4 drinks on the plane and admitted he had taken a double dose of Ambien.

Do you still think the same entity or people should pay? Or, is the Doctor culpable?

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Kailua, Hawaii
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21. Re: Who should pay for damages?

Not sure who is responsible.

My concern is: who told you that the "sick patient was a medical doctor who had consumed at least 4 drinks on the plane and admitted he had taken a double dose of Ambien."

If it was medical personnel they are in violation of HIPAA regulations. Hit them up for the hotel fees---they're looking at many thousands of dollars of penalty fees to begin with. Shouldn't be a stretch to cover accomodations for the passengers who were inconvenienced.

Lloydminster...
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22. Re: Who should pay for damages?

"If it was medical personnel they are in violation of HIPAA regulations. Hit them up for the hotel fees---they're looking at many thousands of dollars of penalty fees to begin with. Shouldn't be a stretch to cover accomodations for the passengers who were inconvenienced."

Isnt that blackmail?

Sun City West...
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23. Re: Who should pay for damages?

on a not so serious note, i'd be glad to have to return to hawaii. thanks doc!

on another note...might his being a first class passenger make a difference? ...and why is it so important to mention it...if any one catches my drift.

Lloydminster...
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24. Re: Who should pay for damages?

Im missing your drift...

Kailua, Hawaii
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25. Re: Who should pay for damages?

I catch your drift, Billy.

Frankly, I care not whether one is traveling in FC or steerage. It might have mattered during the Titanic years but, IMHO, not so much now. To mention it reeks of elitism. IOW, who cares about your travel class status, except perhaps the person who feels compelled to mention it. Why mention it at all, except to establish your supposed status. Blecccch.

Leslieannef, it was a TIC response. But the HIPAA reference is dead serious.

I think all of us, if we have traveled extensively, eventually end up being on a flight that is disrupted due to a medical emergency. It is a fact of air travel and I think, if we ever should suffer the misfortune of being the subject of such an incident, we would appreciate the kindness of strangers.

Nobody died because of the change in travel plans but the person who was in distress might have. Was his misery somewhat self-inflicted? Who knows. But apparently it was real and warranted the delay.

Life goes on. Suck it up, first class or not.

Edited: 11:52 pm, October 03, 2012
Hana, Hawaii
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26. Re: Who should pay for damages?

KailuaMamma, I am with you. Doesn't matter that it was a Doc. Sooner or later this will happen to someone on a flight. I think the airline is responsible to their patrons, but ONLY I guess if it's in their fine print, right?

But what is important here is when I take my American Airlines first class seat rows with me when I deplane, I can be guaranteed of first class seats again. As long as I bring them back and bolt them down myself or has my attendant do so. :)

Lloydminster...
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27. Re: Who should pay for damages?

I came back to tell you I caught your drift lol, had to reread op.... Hey its late and Im canadian...apparently we're slow....

Also, good to know it was TIC, now that I've gotten that cleared up I realize you make a good point, how does OP know the dirty details of the doctor's demise? (Sorry I love Alliteration).

Sun City West...
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28. Re: Who should pay for damages?

unless the doctor's name was stated, this was not a HIPPA violation.

funny stuff, leslie...lol.

Kailua, Hawaii
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29. Re: Who should pay for damages?

Billy, it was a HIPAA violation if information regarding the patient was shared by medical personnel. And no name has to be mentioned. Just the fact that the person was a doctor and information about the flight is enough to qualify for "identifying information."

Medical personnel are bound by HIPAA regulations not to divulge information regarding patients. It's majorly strict and they are NOT kidding here. Huge fines can be imposed.

I suppose the FA's could blab freely. They shouldn't, really, and IME they don't. But the OP might have gotten the info from them...who knows. IME FA's give very minimal info to other passengers regarding passengers who have fallen ill on flights.

So if the FA's were the ones who shared info about the passenger in distress, shame on them. If it was a member of the medical community, they're liable for damages according to the HIPAA schedule of damage liabilities.

Edited: 1:30 am, October 04, 2012
30. Re: Who should pay for damages?

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