Imposing liability on Health Canada and other regulatory regimes might also have a "potential chilling effect on public health" because it would likely result in constraining access to new devices and medical treatments, the court argued. The government would be inclined to limit their availability in a bid to protect itself. "In addition, the imposition of liability could also discourage medical advances and innovative technologies, which often come with risks and without guarantees regarding their long-term consequences."
News For the record vices and medical treatments, the court The College promptly imposed con- argued. The government would be in- ditions on Poon’s certificate of registra- Court turfs product liability clined to limit their availability in a bid tion, requiring that he agree to have his to protect itself. “In addition, the impo- family practice reviewed and that he suits against government sition of liability could also discourage participate in the province’s Physician medical advances and innovative tech- Review and Enhancement Program T he federal government owes no nologies, which often come with risks within 6-weeks. Should he pass that “duty of care” to individual and without guarantees regarding their program with a category 3 result, he Canadians in its regulation of long-term consequences.” would be entitled to perform “minor di- medical devices and thus can’t be held Government liability would also in- agnostic procedures on superficial le- liable for harm resulting from their use, evitably prompt industry to reduce its sions less than 2 cm, under local anes- the Ontario Court of Appeal has ruled own vigilance as it would likely serve thetic, for medical, not cosmetic in rejecting a class-action lawsuit as a “disincentive” to compliance. “Di- reasons; incisions and drainage of su- brought on behalf of an approximated minished deterrence for a regulated in- perficial abscesses; and suturing of un- 29 500 Canadian women who received dustry is to be avoided particularly complicated superficial lacerations.” Dow Corning silicone breast implants when it is the industry, and not the reg- But such minor surgical procedures between 1962 and 1992. ulator, that holds critical knowledge re- would remain prohibited if performed Holding the federal government li- garding product safety.” on the face or neck of a patient. — able for harm caused by products such Wayne Kondro, CMAJ as implants would ultimately result in medical treatments becoming inaccessi- Ontario medical watchdog DOI:10.1503/cmaj.081584 ble and limitations on Canadians free- dom of choice, argued Justice Susan E. censures family physician Lang in a 3-0 court ruling (Attis v. Briefly I Canada (Health) 2008 ONCA 660) n the first test of its regulatory that rejected lead plaintiffs Joyce Attis crackdown on untrained family and Alexandra Tesiuk’s negligence physicians who perform cosmetic Electronic cigarettes: The World claim that asserted Health Canada was surgery, the College of Physicians and Health Organization says there is no responsible for ensuring the safety of Surgeons of Ontario has slapped the evidentiary basis for concluding that all medical devices. wrists of a Toronto-area doctor for so-called electronic cigarettes — stain- If that were allowed, it would invite professional misconduct while per- les
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