Mr. Speaker, Health Canada has developed a very welcome and new approach to the client consent initiative for the non-insured health benefits program after extensive consultations with Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, first nations, clients and other stakeholders.
This new approach means that expressed consent is only required those clients where patient safety or inappropriate use may be a concern. Now, most clients of the program do not have to sign a form to continue to receive non-insured health benefits.
Expressed consent will be required when non-insured health benefits must share information with third parties. Health Canada will continue to accept signed forms as expressed consent and will also work to put in place appropriate protocols to accept consent verbally.
This new approach shows that Health Canada does listen to concerns voiced by their stakeholders while remaining committed to protecting privacy and patient safety.