Apology Act passes in Manitoba
WINNIPEG – Manitoba’s Apology Act
has received royal assent in the provincial legislature.
“This new legislation will ensure that we continue to move forward in
developing patient safety initiatives,” said Health Minister Theresa
Oswald. “We are happy to support this bill and I would like to commend
the Liberal leader for his efforts in introducing this piece of
In April, Dr. Jon Gerrard introduced the private member’s bill
recognizing the importance an apology can play in settling disputes.
“This is an important moment to make more progress in improving patient
safety in Manitoba,” Gerrard said. “I would like to compliment Minister
Oswald for her co-operation in allowing this bill, which will benefit
all Manitobans, to move forward.”
Bill 202 allows healthcare workers and other professionals to make an
apology without it constituting an admission of legal liability.
This legislation will help health-care workers to admit errors and keep
communications open in moving forward on patient safety, said Oswald,
adding it will also enable patients and families to better understand
the situation in which an error occurred and receive closure.
The Apology Act follows similar legislation that exists in British
Columbia, Australia and several American jurisdictions.