Self-regulation isn’t a Spectator Sport

I have been hearing about large groups of people in the U.S. protesting the outcome of the recent presidential election.  My first thought is “good for them” and my second thought is “I really hope they voted”.  In the run up to the U.S. election, it was estimated that between 80 and 100 million voting-age […]

What Happens Within the “Circle of Care” – Stays Within the “Circle of Care”

We have had Personal Health Information Privacy legislation (PHIPA) in Ontario since 2004, and employers regularly emphasise to their staff the perils of indiscriminately viewing personal health records (and conduct random audits to determine compliance). Yet healthcare information privacy violations still occur – sometimes with very serious consequences for both the patient and the healthcare […]

Medical Assistance in Dying – What if I don’t agree with it

Until recently, Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) had been prohibited in Canada under the Criminal Code.  However, in the Carter v. Canada decision (February 6, 2015), the Supreme Court of Canada found that an absolute prohibition on MAID violated an individual’s legal rights under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.  The Charter states that […]

Personal Information in the Information Age

The astonishing array of personal information available at our fingertips has had two very different effects on our society, our healthcare system and on us as healthcare professionals. One is the growing awareness that we need to safeguard our privacy from the technology that has encroached on virtually every part of our lives. The other […]

“Once more unto the breach, dear friends…”

For some reason I can’t quite understand, there have recently been a number of very serious privacy breaches involving health care professionals being caught snooping into patient personal health records. Surprisingly, some of these incidences have involved fairly high profile individuals (such as was the case concerning former Toronto Mayor Rob Ford)1, and some have […]