Can a doctor/nurse report a minor to the police if they come in drunk?

Yesterday, I was at a party and I cut my hand open while I was drunk. I went to the doctor and got it all patched up. Later after drinking a substantial amount of whiskey my mother took me back to the doctor because I cut it open again when I fell. I didn’t get admitted but if I were to have gotten admitted would they have been able to/or required to call the police and report me being drunk at 17? Almost 18.

Asked on September 18, 2011 under Criminal Law, South Dakota

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

If you had appeared at a medical facility and had been drinking, the treating physician and/or nurse would have been required to report you to law enforcement as a minor who had been drinking alcohol.

Treating physicians and other health care practioners are required to report to law enforcement all situations involving a minor where the minor's well being is in danger with respect to a situation that he or she should not have been in.

In your situation it was the drinking of alcohol, namely, drinking a substantial amount of whiskey.


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