Proposed Amendments to the Medical Act of Nova Scotia
 by Citizens for Choice in Health Care
UPdate Summer 1995


Amendment 1
Freedom of Choice in Health Care
Appropriate Professional Peer Review
Health Services and Disciplines Act 

To ensure patient and physician-provider fairness, accountability and freedom of choice in health care – legislative amendment #1 to the Medical Act of Nova Scotia should read:

 1.a. Freedom of Choice in Health Care

“A registered practitioner shall not be found guilty of professional incompetence, misconduct, or negligence based solely on the fact that the registered practitioner employs therapy that is unconventional, experimental, or non-traditional in the absence of any demonstrable physical harm or unless it can be demonstrated that the therapy has a safety risk unreasonably greater than the prevailing treatment.”

This section would ensure that a registered physician could provide the subspecialties of Complementary Medicine which are Environmental Medicine, Bioenergetic Medicine (including electro-acupuncture and allied therapy), Homeopathy and Homotoxicology, Nutritional and Botanical Medicine and Intravenous Nutrition and Detoxification Therapy.

 1.b. Appropriate Professional Peer Review

“The Provincial Medical Board will ensure that appropriate peer review is undertaken in any investigation, disciplinary, and inquiry processes and proceedings regarding the delivery of specific medical services to ensure adequate review by medical professionals with expertise in the similar medical practices offered by any licensed physician who is subject to investigation, disciplinary or inquiry proceedings within the Provincial Medical Board.”

This will ensure the maintenance of appropriate and professionally accountable high standards of patient care by those who provide Complementary Medicine.

 1.c. Establishment and Recognition of Health Services and
Disciplines Act

“Non-medical doctor complementary health care service practitioners shall be recognized within and accountable to a new and additional legislative act to be brought forward in the future and known as the Health Services and Disciplines Act for regulation and recognition of those health care services offered by non-medical doctor practitioners and not presently covered by existing legislative acts (such as Chiropractic, Nursing, etc.).  This would include non-insured complementary health care services Acupuncture, Naturopathy, Massage Therapy, Nutritional Counselling, Psychotherapy and additional services.”

Amendment 2
Provincial Medical Board Equal
Representation and Public Accountability

To ensure patient and physician fairness, accountability and freedom of choice in health care it is necessary that equal representation of non-physician and physician members (e.g. ‘payer’ and ‘server’) be independently appointed to the Provincial Medical Board.  In order to restore the public’s faith and trust in the structure and activities of the Provincial Medical Board the following amendment #2 to the Medical Act of Nova Scotia is necessary:

“The Provincial Medical Board will consist of equal (or greater) non-physician members appointed independently at-large by an independent body and will serve in equal (or greater) numbers to that of physicians in all investigation, disciplinary, inquiry or review processes or procedures.”