I’m Kate Dewhirst.

I’m a lawyer who writes about legal issues affecting healthcare in Canada

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

Health Privacy Update: 4 new health privacy decisions of the IPC released

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On Friday January 12, the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario released four new decisions. Here is my updated summary of all 64  IPC PHIPA Decisions Decision 61: Reasonable Search: A physician received a request for access to all records relating to the complainant’s deceased son. The complainant believed additional records should exist. The physician said… Read more »


Start keeping track of all privacy breaches – Report due March 2019

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Just a reminder that as of January 1, 2018 if you are a health information custodian you need to start keeping track of certain information relating to privacy breaches. The Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario released guidelines that will come into effect March 2019 but require you to start tracking certain kinds of privacy breaches now…. Read more »


In Memoriam – My sister Beth Ferkranus

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It is with great sadness that I announce my little sister, Beth Ferkranus, passed away over the holidays.  It was sudden and completely unexpected.  We are all devastated.  You can read her Obituary here. I want to thank everyone for your kindness and the outpouring of love we have received. Some of you know that my sisters are… Read more »







Health Privacy Update – November 2017 – 4 new decisions of the IPC

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The Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario released four new PHIPA decisions today. These are relevant to any health care organization in Ontario. Read the summaries of all 60 IPC PHIPA Decisions here. Decision 57: A patient made an access request at a hospital. The patient wanted to know why he was being told by physicians at the… Read more »


Talking about risk and statutory compliance without scaring or boring your board

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If you are a CEO or ED of a healthcare organization, you need to talk to your board about risk. How do you do it without scaring them or boring them? You make risk real. You explain real situations that have happened to similar organizations. Here are a couple of pointers: Give them a risk architecture:… Read more »


Some of Kate’s Upcoming events

Where immigration and health law issues collide

April 25, 2018

Presentation to invited Community Health Centre clients

In collaboration with immigration lawyer Jacqueline Swaisland.

2018 Privacy Officer Training

May 8 to June 12, 2018

16 hours live and online training

for Privacy Officers and Privacy Officers-to-be. Live sessions held in Toronto. Course is now full, but here are details and booking for Kate's October course.

De-escalation training

May 16, 2018

Training session for a Toronto Family Health Team

In conjunction with leadership coach Christine Burych.

Team Privacy Training Events

May 17, June 13

For Primary Care clinics and FHTs

Kate trains health professionals from another two primary care organizations how being privacy-respectful can improve therapeutic relationships. more details...

Ask me anything (about health privacy)

12 noon, May 23, 2018

An hour webinar with Kate where you can ask Kate any privacy-related questions you have.

Open to all health Privacy Officers. Register 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.

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What does a Privacy Officer do in a health care organization? https://t.co/rQRBq051u3 #healthprivacy #HealthLaw #TorontoLawyer

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The Commissioner provided an update on Latest Developments at the IPC. Here are some highlights.… https://t.co/XKVkb6Aunm

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Have you looked at your hospital’s Professional Staff Rules and Regulations lately? https://t.co/CTp6xa8OyC #HealthLaw #hospitals

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contact details

901 King Street West Suite 400 East Tower
Toronto Ontario M5V 3H5

(416) 855 9557