Manitoba Wants to Allow Easier Disclosure of Personal Health Information

Manitoba Wants to Allow Easier Disclosure of Personal Health Information

Cameron Friesen
Minister Cameron Friesen speaks at the Manitoba Legislature in Winnipeg on March 12, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/David Lipnowski)

WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government has introduced legislation to allow for the disclosure of personal health information without a patient’s consent, if deemed necessary to reduce the risk of serious harm to themselves or others.

Health, Seniors and Active Living Minister Cameron Friesen says the amendment to the Personal Health Information Act (PHIA) would prevent cases where health-care professionals were restricted from conveying their concerns to a patient’s support network that have ended in tragedy.

“These amendments will bring Manitoba in line with jurisdictions that have done a better job of balancing the duty to protect personal health information with the need to notify loved ones in rare cases where an individual discharged from hospital can possibly present danger to themselves or others,” Friesen said.

The Mental Health Act would also be amended to allow disclosure of information from a patient’s clinical record in a psychiatric facility without consent.

Friesen says a review of PHIA legislation is currently underway, noting further amendments may be considered and introduced in 2019.

— Staff

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