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Undertakings can manage some concerns about physicians

Undertakings can be an effective means by which to address concerns about physicians’ practices, Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen  tells the Toronto Star .  Read more

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Patients' right to sue hospitals may have big impact on public purse

The Ontario Court of Appeal decision that makes it possible for patients to sue hospitals and other health-care organizations for privacy breaches could potentially have significant financial ramifications, says Toronto health lawyer  Kate Dewhirst .  Read more

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Appeal case allows patients to sue hospitals: Sunshine

An Ontario Court of Appeal decision that gives patients the right to sue hospitals – and any other health information custodian – is an important ruling that will have far-reaching implications, says Toronto health lawyer Elyse Sunshine .  Read more

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SCC ruling on assisted suicide carries many implications for physicians, regulatory regime required

Toronto health lawyer Elyse Sunshine  says it’s critical that physicians pay close attention to any regulatory changes that may affect them in the months following the landmark Supreme Court of Canada ruling that lifts the ban on doctor-assisted suicide.  Read more

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Ontario’s IPC launches new resources to guard against snooping

By Kate Dewhirst The  Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario  launched a new campaign called “Is snooping on patients worth It?” See  video d other resources. Also included in this campaign is a new resource document for health care organizations called “ Detecting and Deterring Unauthorized Access to Personal Health Information a must read for all health care privacy officers. Read More at DDO Health Law Blog Read more

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Legislation safeguarding health care integrity receives Royal Assent

By Kate Dewhirst On July 22, 2014, the Ontario government introduced Bill 21, the  Safeguarding Health Care Integrity Act, 2014 . Bill 21 received Royal Assent on Dec. 11, 2014. This legislation intends to safeguard health care integrity by enacting the  Voluntary Blood Donations Act, 2014 .  In relation to Ontario’s voluntary blood donor model, the legislation prohibits payments or offers of payment to individuals for their blood, including any forms of ... Read more

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Supreme Court reverses ban on doctor assisted death; unconstitutional

OTTAWA – The Supreme Court of Canada has unanimously struck down the ban on providing a doctor-assisted death to mentally competent but suffering and ``irremediable'' patients. Read more

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Rosen to discuss legal issues affecting elderly clients

Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen will discuss key legal issues when dealing with the elderly, including determining capacity, at the 2 nd Elderly Client course later this month. Read more

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Rosen, Sunshine lead seminar for medical students on informed consent

On Jan. 19, Toronto health lawyers Lonny Rosen and Elyse Sunshine will facilitate a seminar on informed consent as part of the University of Toronto’s Undergraduate Medical Education program. Read more

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Hospitals should regularly check for privacy breaches

"It is absolutely advisable” for hospitals to do regularly scheduled proactive audits of their patient records to check for privacy breaches, Toronto health lawyer Elyse Sunshine  tells the  Toronto Star . “In fact, it helps instill a culture of privacy in the organization,” she says. Sunshine, partner at Rosen Sunshine LLP , advises health professionals on privacy issues and says it’s “risky behaviour” for hospitals to only ... Read more

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Physician competency complaints a complex issue

While patient safety is the number one concern when dealing with complaints around physician competence, hospital administrators must carefully weigh complex interests to avoid a host of serious repercussions, says Toronto health lawyer Kate Dewhirst . "Hospitals must be measured and acknowledge that these kinds of complaints can have serious negative impacts on someone's reputation and ability to practise, their income and relationships with other members of the team," she tells ... Read more

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Lonny Rosen's tips for advance-care planning

Doctors need to know the law around advance-care planning, both in order to support their patients in communicating their wishes and in order to give effect to those wishes, Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen tells the Medical Post . Doctors also have to be able to help family members or other substitute decision makers (SDMs) comply with their obligations under the law when making decisions on behalf of another person, he says. The article emphasizes how Ontario doctors should be ... Read more

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Draft policy reshapes how end-of-life care is decided

A draft policy  from Ontario’s College of Physicians & Surgeons that directs doctors to obtain the consent of patients or their families before deciding to turn off or withhold life-preserving treatments is timely and promotes much-needed discussions between patients and physicians about end-of-life care, says Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman . The National Post  has reported that the College's draft policy "largely reshapes how end-of-life care is ... Read more

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Privacy breaches point to training issue: Sunshine

Several recent health information privacy breaches – including one involving 500 patient files at Lakeridge Health in Oshawa – demonstrate that better training of frontline staff is needed, says Toronto health lawyer Elyse Sunshine . “These investigations into breaches are time-consuming and cost money, so it’s better to do it at the front end and train people, so as to avoid having to spend money at the back end to clean up the problems,” she tells the ... Read more

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Rosen to discuss health information protection basics

Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen is set to share his insights on the basics of the Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA) at an upcoming summit aimed at health professionals. Read more

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Opening a dialogue on physician retirement is key

Physician retirement is an ongoing issue for hospitals these days and it’s important for health organizations to adopt policies that will help them plan as best as possible for doctors who are leaving the workforce in their golden years, says Toronto health lawyer  Kate Dewhirst . “This is a pervasive and stressful issue facing all hospitals and it’s not going away in the context of our aging population,” she tells  AdvocateDaily.com . Dewhirst, ... Read more

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Family of aboriginal girl can legally opt for traditional medicine

BRANTFORD, Ont. – The family of an 11-year-old aboriginal girl with cancer has a constitutional right to opt for traditional medicine over chemotherapy, an Ontario judge ruled Friday in what some observers called a landmark decision. A hospital that had been treating the First Nations girl sought to have the child apprehended and placed back into chemotherapy after her mother had pulled her out of the treatment earlier this year, but its application was dismissed by Judge Gethin ... Read more

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Dykeman speaks at Advocates' Society Fall Convention

Health-care issues, including mental-health issues, affect everyone – whether it's a family member, co-worker, client, someone appearing before a judge or someone self-representing in many types of proceedings, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman told The Advocates' Society at its recent fall convention in Mexico.   Dykeman, partner at Dykeman Dewhirst O’Brien LLP , delivered a primer on the Health Care Consent Act and Mental Health Act to an ... Read more

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Practitioners must dispose of health records properly

Toronto health lawyer  Lonny Rosen  says a recent case of patient files being strewn on a street highlights the importance of disposing of health information records in a secure manner. “It’s a reminder that doctors, dentists, hospitals and other health information custodians must ensure they take appropriate steps to safeguard their records and that means disposing of them in a secure manner  – shredding them, for example,” he tells  AdvocateDaily.com . “Custodians really have to take this ... Read more

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Nursing homes must staff RNs 24/7

Toronto health lawyer  Lonny Rosen  says a recent decision by the  Health Services Appeal and Review Board  underscores the necessity for all nursing homes – even the small, cash-strapped ones – to adhere to the requirement in  Ontario’s Long-Term Care Homes Act  to have at least one registered nurse, who is an employee, present in the home at all times. “Despite financial hardship, even small nursing homes must meet their obligations under the legislation, including the requirement to have ... Read more

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