Mary Jane Dykeman

Mary Jane Dykeman
DDO Health Law
Health, Information Technology, Privacy

A partner with the Toronto firm DDO Health Law in Toronto, Mary Jane Dykeman divides her practice between health law and data law matters. She advises clients on a broad range of health law matters including risk management and strategic advice, mental health, consent, capacity and substitute decision-making. A significant area of her practice is devoted to privacy, cyber security, and artificial intelligence (AI).

Ms. Dykeman was called to the Ontario Bar in 1998 after receiving her law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in 1996, and an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Bioethics from Mount Allison University in 1989. She has acted as in-house legal counsel to two Toronto teaching hospitals.

She founded the Mental Health Law course in Osgoode Professional Development’s Health Law LL.M. program, which she continues to teach with Michele Warner; as well as Osgoode’s Mental Health Certificate Program (now co-directed by Kristin Taylor and Michele Warner, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.)

With the Advocacy Centre for the Elderly, Ms. Dykeman has co-authored two Law Commission of Ontario papers on health-care consent and advance care planning, including end-of-life practice tools. Her understanding of health system co-ordination for seniors, advance care planning, long-term care and end of life enables her to provide key compliance and wise counsel. Ms. Dykeman is the primary author of two toolkits developed with AdvantAge Ontario, a member association serving the long-term care sector, on medical assistance in dying and cannabis legalization, respectively. She also works extensively on challenging patient and family issues, and more recently on tools for family caregivers with The Change Foundation.

Ms. Dykeman provides practical privacy advice in the public and private sectors, and is a sought-after speaker. She responds to privacy breaches, advises on the creation of complex shared information systems, and trains extensively on legislative requirements and emerging trends.

Frequently assisting clients on issues that create significant clinical or enterprise risk management, Ms. Dykeman is often behind the scenes, providing strategic counsel and supporting senior teams to address the most difficult issues. This includes disruptive situations involving staff, patients/residents/clients and family members; as well as on shaping public policy in emerging areas such as AI.

Ms. Dykeman is vice-chair of the Alzheimer Society of Toronto board, and deputy chair of the Research Ethics Board of Canadian Blood Services. With Dr. Julia Spence, she has a platform for family caregivers of seniors, at

Mary Jane Dykeman Posts

Cyberattacks a health-care lesson in hyper-vigilance

Recent ransomware attacks on three Ontario hospitals is a cautionary tale that should have the province’s health-care providers and boards taking notice, says Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman. Read more

INQ Data Law addressing cutting-edge issues

INQ Data Law, one of Toronto's newest additions, is bringing something unique to law — a focus on data and artificial intelligence, firm partners Mary Jane Dykeman and Carole Piovesan tell Read more

Dykeman examines artificial intelligence, possibility, and law in health care

The intersection of artificial intelligence (AI) and patient data opens new frontiers in health care but also comes with privacy concerns, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman tells Read more

Privacy and security stakes high in cannabis arena

The clock is ticking for licensed producers of cannabis to get their privacy and security measures in order ahead of the drug’s legalization for recreational use, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman tells Read more

Aging Boomers, dementia, and sexuality a potent mix: Dykeman

As the Baby Boomer cohort slides into their golden years there are myriad legal issues that arise, including dealing with dementia and sexual behaviour says Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman. Read more

Organizations have a duty to keep personal health information secure

Encryption is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to securing the personal health information of patients, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman tells CBC News . 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

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

Violence against health-care workers a growing problem

With incidents of violence against health-care workers by patients and their families seemingly on the rise, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman says it’s critical for sector organizations to develop best practices, training tools and strategies to mitigate the risks and effectively deal with incidents when they occur. Read more

Youth and medical assistance in dying: the complexities

With Canadian pediatricians saying they are increasingly being asked about medical assistance in dying (MAiD) for some patients under 18, Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman tells The Lawyer’s Daily that physicians need to be equipped with the correct information about what the current legislative scheme permits. Read more

Texas defamation suit picture of an online nightmare: Dykeman

A social media campaign by former clients that destroyed a Texas photographer's business is a "cautionary tale" of how quickly reputations and businesses can be destroyed by negative online commentary, says Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman. Read more

Dykeman receives OBA health law award

The Ontario Bar Association (OBA) has recognized Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman as the 2017 recipient of the Susan Hilary Davidson Memorial Award for Excellence in Health Law. Read more

Tragic long-term care home deaths may lead to systemic change

WOODSTOCK, Ont. — A former Ontario nurse admitted Thursday to using insulin to kill eight seniors and hurt six others while the vulnerable individuals were in her care, in part because she felt angry with her career and her life's responsibilities. Read more

Dykeman joins forces with marketing gurus for launch

Toronto health lawyer Mary Jane Dykeman is part of a unique collaboration that has launched , an online coaching and e-learning platform for lawyers and attorneys worldwide. Read more