Ontario Ministry of Health reverses course on guardianship requirement for disabled woman
Ontario has reversed its position on a requirement that guardianship must be established for a pregnant woman with disabilities who needs support for child care services. Following a decision by the province’s medical regulatory agency, The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons (OCPS) on Friday, March 3, 2018 issued a revised version of its guidelines for physicians, family members and professionals to recommend that pregnant women with disabilities receive the same level of care from hospitals as women without disabilities.
“We have a great duty of care for women without disabilities,” said Dr. Jane Poyes, Director of Health Services for the Ministry of Health. “However, the reality is that we have a similar number of people with disabilities to people without, so there must be a difference in the way we provide care. That is why we have developed a clinical practice guideline for physicians to help in the best way possible to ensure a safe delivery and a healthy baby.”
The revised version has been posted on the OCPS website and is available to read online (http://www.cosctexas.edu/public/guidelines/pediatrics-in-pregnancy-disabilities-and-babies) or the OCPS website via email ([email protected]). The revised OCPS guideline is also posted on their website (http://www.cosctexas.edu/public/guidelines/pediatrics-in-pregnancy-disabilities-and-babies).
Dr. Poyes said that the revised policy does not increase the level of care that medical professionals should be providing to pregnant women with disabilities, but that it is focused on the best possible care the pregnant woman and her family can receive. The revised guideline does not, however, address the issue of the level of care a woman with a disability who is pregnant receives from a hospital.
“I know that for a lot of people, for a lot of doctors, for a lot of families, it takes quite