Saturday, January 05, 2008

Allowing medical device reps into surgeries questioned

British Columbia has recently changed the rules to prohibit representatives of medical device manufacturers from scrubbing in for surgeries. As far as I know, this is the first such rule in Canada and company reps are routinely permitted into surgeries in other provinces.

I got a call from CBC just before New Years to comment on the practice and the quotes they used pretty well sum up my view:

'Time-honoured' medical practice questioned

David Fraser, a privacy lawyer in Halifax, said patients should have a say.

"When an individual is undergoing surgery, they're sedated. They're not aware of what's going on around them and they're completely vulnerable to the surroundings and what's happening to them," Fraser said.

"There's a higher obligation on the part of health care professionals to make sure that consent is properly obtained."

Wedge said despite privacy concerns in other provinces there are no plans to bring in new policies on P.E.I.

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