Oct 31, 2012
By Michael Kramer
The Ontario Highway Traffic Act requires a doctor to inform a patient about their concerns if they think that patient may not be fit to drive.
Doctors are paid $36.25 for each patient they report to the Ministry Of Transport as an incentive to comply with the law.
At its annual meeting The Canadian Cardiovascular Society heard that the law unfairly penalizes many heart patients who likely pose little danger on the roads.
Christopher Simpson of Queens University says it might be preferable if doctors simply urged patients not to drive when the danger seems real or if there was no legal obligation on physicians to report.
The Cardiovascular Society publishes guidelines indicating which patients should be reported. They are often people who are at risk of blackouts or even sudden death because of certain heart arrhythmias and other ailments.