New continuity of care ‘suite’ of policies open for consultation

By Elyse Sunshine and Lonny Rosen. All physicians, especially family physicians, should be aware that the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (the College) is seeking feedback on a ‘suite’ of new draft policies pertaining to continuity of care which is comprised of a foundational Continuity of Care draft policy (referred to as the umbrella policy), as well as four companion draft policies that set out expectations regarding: Availability & Coverage ; Managing Tests (this draft policy is a revision of the College’s current Test Results Management Policy) ; Transitions in Care ; and Walk-in Clinics . Read more

Defining death won't stop disputes over ventilation removal

A legislated definition of death would do little to prevent court challenges from family members who believe their loved ones are still alive after they've been declared neurologically dead by physicians, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman tells Read more

Compliance necessary with new Canada Free Trade Agreement

With the Canada Free Trade Agreement (CFTA) in force for one year as of July 1, Toronto health lawyer Michael Gleeson says it’s an apt time for public-sector health organizations to ensure they are in compliance with its requirements around procurement. Read more

Physician privileges case shows limited jurisdiction of HRTO

A case involving a physician illustrates the limited jurisdiction of the Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario (HRTO) over unfair — but not discriminatory — interference with hospital privileges, Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen tells Read more

Health sector keeping close eye on nurse inquiry

ST. THOMAS, Ont. — A nurse who killed elderly patients in her care was disciplined several times over poor job performance but no one thought she was seriously harming people at the long-term care home where she worked, a former supervisor testified Monday at the public inquiry examining Elizabeth Wettlaufer's actions. Read more

Dykeman to address ORCA spring roadshow event

Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman is speaking at the Ontario Retirement Communities Association (ORCA) spring roadshow where this year’s conference topic is managing conflict and mitigating risk. Read more

Dentist's case highlights reality that CAS report may trigger complaint

Media coverage of a mother who complained after her child’s dentist reported her to a Children’s Aid Society (CAS) for possible “oral neglect” highlights a potential risk of complying with a health professional’s mandatory duties in cases where they learn there is a child in need of protection, Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen tells Read more

Wettlaufer complaints, ability to keep working ‘key’ part of inquiry: Sunshine

ST. THOMAS, Ont. — A nurse who killed elderly patients in her care was the subject of multiple complaints but was given a positive reference letter and went on working until she confessed her crimes, documents filed at a public inquiry examining her actions show. Read more

Training is your best weapon to guard against fraud

By Kate Dewhirst . Recently, the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario released two new health privacy decisions. Read more

Paper health records can cause serious privacy issues: report

By Kate Dewhirst . A new Canadian study published in the American Medical Association journal JAMA found that hospitals have a serious issue when it comes to throwing away paper copies of health records. Read more

How to run a smooth AGM

Small governance changes can translate into big improvements when it comes to the running of annual general meetings, Toronto health lawyer Michael Gleeson tells Read more

Dismissed charges not evidence of misconduct for health professionals

Health professionals with charges before the courts need the assistance of a criminal lawyer, but they should also access the legal services of counsel who handle regulatory matters to deal with disciplinary or other proceedings arising from such allegations, Toronto health lawyer Lonny Rosen tells Read more

Five traps you should avoid when a patient complains

By Kate Dewhirst . Every health care organization receives complaints. A complaint is any negative feedback received from a patient or family member of a patient about your services. Read more

Rigid adherence to clinic procedures results in College complaint

By Lonny Rosen and Elyse Sunshine . The Health Professions Appeal and Review Board (HPARB) recently confirmed a decision of the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee (ICRC) of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) to take remedial action against a physician who was found to have placed undue focus on clinic procedures and rules, to the detriment of patient care. Read more

Insurance company requests: Clinicians' FAQs answered

With almost two decades of experience advising clinicians, Toronto health lawyer Kate Dewhirst has answered just about any question you can think of when it comes to sharing patient information with insurance companies. Read more