Rapid City Journal, November 12, 2012
A more strict interpretation of the HIPAA law led the Regional Health medical group to change how it handles patients who are under arrest or were in jail. The move could allow some inmates or patients under arrest to not return to jail even though their sentence or arrest status requires it. Pennington County Sheriff Kevin Thom said high-risk prisoners who need hospital care have always been guarded throughout their stay by law enforcement officers and will continue to be guarded. But low-risk violators will now be issued personal recognizance bonds. The bonds are a commitment from the person to report to law enforcement after treatment. If an offender does not report back, a warrant for their arrest can be issued, Thom said.