I’m Kate Dewhirst.

My team and I write about legal issues affecting healthcare in Canada.

Kate Dewhirst Health Law - bringing the law to life. Meet Kate (in 13 seconds)

Documenting Quality of Care and Risk Management Activities

Posted by

IPC decision 177 is a companion decision to IPC Decision 176. Both decisions centre around the shared records of two hospitals who provided care to a patient prior to his death by suicide. See the take-aways from Decision 166 here.

The patient’s father filed a complaint with the IPC after reviewing an audit of his son’s hospital records. The audit showed that the records had been accessed by hospital personnel for quality of care purposes, risk management and patient relations purposes, all of which are permitted under PHIPA.

The IPC dismissed the complaint, but encouraged the hospital to amend its policy to require all of its agents (regardless of whether they are care providers or otherwise) to document when records are accessed for quality assurance purposes.

Takeaways: Quality of care and risk management activities are permitted by PHIPA – providers should not shy away from these activities if they are appropriate in the circumstances. However, this is the first time that the IPC has encouraged documentation of these activities in the record. Although administratively more burdensome, this documentation will provide clarity during auditing and (fingers crossed) lead to fewer complaints and increased trust between patients and providers.


If you enjoyed this article please share it:


Previous and next posts from Kate:

Some of Kate’s recent and upcoming events

Free healthcare privacy webinar - ask me anything!
the first Wednesday of every month

Free webinars - advance registration needed

Whether you're an experienced privacy officer or new in the field, pick Kate’s brain for free for an hour, in this live webinar. No charge, but you’ll need to register in advance.

Health Privacy Officer Foundations training
October 24, 31, November 7, 14, 21, 28 2022 Coming Soon: Spring 2023 Next Program

For Privacy Officers within healthcare organizations.

This course focuses on how to become a more confident privacy officer and gives you the tools to document your privacy program. Full details and registration here...

Join the Shush: a collective of health privacy officers
Annual membership 2022

For Privacy Officers within healthcare organizations

This is an annual membership program that takes theory into practice and tackles real life scenarios to build Privacy Officer skills.
Full details and registration here.

Primary care webinars: Employment Law Update & Legal Issues for EDs and Board members

Part of Kate’s monthly webinar series.

Our May program will address progressive discipline and in September we discuss mandatory training for new employees and October we discuss ethical decision making in primary care.
Full details of the 2022 webinar series and registration here.

Team Privacy Training Events
August 3, September 7, 23

For Primary Care clinics, Hospitals, Community Agencies, Mental Health Teams, Public Health Units, School Boards, Police departments

Kate trains health professionals from many more health care organizations how being privacy-respectful can improve therapeutic relationships. More details...

Ontario Hospital Association Professional Staff Credentialing Toolkit

2nd Edition is now available for managing physicians, dentists, midwives and nurse practitioners in hospitals Read here...

Free summary of all PHIPA IPC decisions

Want to read privacy breach stories to learn how to improve your work? We have summarized all the Information and Privacy Commissioner's health privacy decisions for you Download here...

Kate Dewhirst Health Law

Kate says:

My mission is bringing the law to life. I make legal theory understandable, accessible and fun! I’m available and love to work for all organizations in the healthcare sector across Ontario and beyond.

Subscribe to my mailing list and keep up to date with news:

Latest Tweets

[OCT 6 – WEBINAR SERIES] Register now at link for "Right or Wrong — Ethical decision-making"… https://t.co/mPCiMBsJN3

08:00 AM Sep 26th

Register now for this FREE upcoming Ask Me Anything. We cover topics like: - video surveillance - snooping - infor… https://t.co/yCc7Cl4TWj

08:00 AM Sep 24th


contact details

P.O. Box 97010 Roncesvalles
Toronto Ontario M6R 3B3

(416) 855 9557

.