KNOXVILLE — Kathy Raymond was with her 12-year-old grandson Matthew when the pair found her husband, Leon, dead of an apparent heart attack.
He was inside a chicken coop on the couple’s Harriman property.
While her grandson ran to call 911, Kathy Raymond attempted to revive her husband through cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Her efforts failed.
“The first responders arrived and started CPR on him while I held his hand and sat next to him. Of course I was crying,” she said.
Once the Emergency Medical Services team arrived, Kathy Raymond was asked to remove herself from the area so that EMS could continue their lifesaving attempts.
“There were trucks and stuff everywhere. I know the fire department came, too. I’ve blocked some of it out,” she said.
What she can’t block out is a Facebook post made by an EMS worker after being at the scene of her husband’s death.
The post read: “well, we had a first … We worked a code in a chicken coop! Knee deep in chicken droppings.”
Kathy Raymond said the post was “insensitive” and “not very professional.”
“I called Roane County EMS to complain, but they never called me back,” Raymond said.
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She did speak with Roane County Executive Ron Woody, who extended an apology and explained that the county’s attorney did not think the post was a violation of HIPAA.
HIPAA is the federal Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, passed in 1996 to ensure data privacy and security provisions for safeguarding medical information.
During an interview with USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee, Woody said, “We had an employee that should not have been on Facebook discussing anything regarding her work. We have consulted with that employee and we are going to meet with the whole group of them … (and explain) that what’s business is business and what’s personal is personal and we don’t want to intersect the two.”
He confirmed that the county attorney “indicated that it was probably not (a violation) of HIPAA,” but acknowledged the post “should not have been done.”
The emergency medical worker’s Facebook page has since been deleted.
Raymond said she is considering a lawsuit because “this is wrong for her to just get a slap on the wrist. I don’t want her to be able to have a job as an EMS worker if she does not have more compassion than that. Even though she did not mention his name, she said it was the first time they had ever had a call in a chicken coop. Everybody knows where my husband died.”
A call to Roane County EMS for a statement was not returned.
Follow Mary Constantine on Twitter @skilletsister