Bill 64 is prompting Quebec College of Physicians fears about patients' personal information protection

The Quebec College of Physicians is concerned about patients' personal information being sold for marketing after changes made in Bill 64. SOURCE: College des medicins du Quebec/Twitter

The Quebec College of Physicians has issued warnings to the Quebec government about using personal health information as the analysis of Bill 64 continues, which will modernize legislative provisions on the protection personal information.

In a letter addressed to the Committee on Institutions of the National Assembly, the college believes that the government should prevent providers of electronic medical records (EMRs) from using health information for commercial purposes, even if they are made anonymous. In order to better protect the public, the college recommends that the government ban the marketing of data.

Also, the college is of the opinion that the information contained in health banks in clinical fields should not be communicated to third parties for statistical or research purposes if the patient’s consent s not obtained.

Projet de loi no 64 : le Collège est préoccupé par la protection des renseignements personnels. Bien qu’il appuie plusieurs modifications apportées par ce projet, il juge important d’effectuer certaines mises en garde par rapport aux nouvelles mesures.

— Collège des médecins du Québec (@CMQ_org) October 7, 2020

Bill 64 mainly aims to revise the legislative provisions surrounding the protection of personal information. It specifies the obligations required of public bodies and private companies in this area.

Last June, former Minister of Justice Sonia LeBel said when tabling the bill that it was intended to give citizens full control over their personal information and to hold the organizations that use that information accountable.

The College of Physicians says it supports several changes made by this bill.

-- this report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 7, 2020.


Stay up-to-date and in-the-know by subscribing to one of our newsletters