Ontario to publicize more medical
TORONTO – The Ontario government
announced that it intends to make much more information concerning
medical error and complaints against physicians publicly available on
the web. The moves are designed to reduce the atmosphere of secrecy
surrounding healthcare and to promote patient safety.
Said Health and Long-Term Care Minister George Smitherman: “Our proposed
changes would ensure that patients have easier access to information to
make informed choices about their healthcare providers.”
Through the amendments it has tabled, the government will be proposing
changes to existing provisions of the Regulated Health Professions Act,
1991 including posting on a health regulatory college’s website:
• findings of malpractice and professional negligence against one of its
• all matters referred to its discipline committee
• every suspension or revocation of a member’s certificate of
Where a healthcare professional has been found guilty of any offence, he
or she will be required to report this to their regulatory college. If
the offence relates to the healthcare professional’s suitability to
practice, the health regulatory college would then make the subsequent
finding of professional misconduct public on its website.
Patients will also have access to information on discipline and
incapacity decision made by regulatory colleges. Such decisions would be
posted on the college’s web site, and information would no longer be
automatically removed from the site after six years.
In addition to these changes, the Ontario government announced that it
intends to move forward with a regulation to require hospitals to inform
patients when errors occur, as well as hospital-level reporting of
critical patient safety measures to the public.
In partnership with leaders in the hospital sector, including the
Ontario Hospital Association, the government will work to establish a
standard approach to this public reporting.
The government is proposing the changes at the present time, and no time
line has been put forward.