#CBC: “Supreme Court guidelines B.C. would not need to disclose well being data to cigarette maker ” #Toronto #Montreal #Calgary #Ottawa #Canada
Friday morning’s unanimous Supreme Court choice clears a hurdle within the province’s quest to sue cigarette firms for billions in well being care prices.
Writing for the courtroom, Justice Russell Brown discovered the well being care databases Philip Morris wished contained details about people whose privateness the province is obligated to guard.
The ruling is the most recent chapter in B.C.’s authorized battle to drive cigarette makers like Philip Morris International to compensate the province for the price of treating tobacco-related diseases — a battle that began within the late 1990s.
Philip Morris International argued it wants entry to people’ well being information to defend itself in courtroom.
The province’s attorneys argued that releasing people’ well being info — even anonymously — might violate privateness legal guidelines.
B.C. pointed to a provision in its Tobacco Damages and Health Care Costs Recovery Act that particularly covers privateness.
Last 12 months, the B.C. Court of Appeal upheld a decrease courtroom’s choice that agreed with the corporate, and dominated that to make sure a good trial, the province wanted at hand over the affected person information.
The Supreme Court disagreed.
Documents cannot be shared, ruling says
B.C. was the primary province to start out the litigation course of, however each different province has since launched related cost-recovery circumstances in opposition to the tobacco trade.
Collectively, they’re in search of about $120 billion.
Brown wrote that the decrease courts targeted on the relevance of the databases slightly than the content material of the knowledge. He mentioned paperwork associated to particular person well being care advantages can’t be shared, even when figuring out info is eliminated.
British Columbia did supply Philip Morris entry to individual-level Statistics Canada information, beneath strict controls, however Philip Morris refused.
Brown mentioned Philip Morris might ask for a “statistically meaningful sample.”
Note: “Previously Published on: 2018-07-13 09:52:59, as ‘Supreme Court guidelines B.C. would not need to disclose well being data to cigarette maker