Paying the price
The women who launched the class action lawsuit against Eastern Health for botched tests to determine treatment for breast cancer, began receiving their cheques last week.
After two years of waiting, it’s about time. While the individual amounts were not made public to protect the privacy of those receiving the money, the amounts were more than expected.
That’s a little good news and comfort for the women who, after all, had gone through so much anguish over this health care fiasco. Outside of their own families, nobody really knows the torment they must have gone through during this unfortunate ordeal.
Based on six categories of harm, the compensation ranged from $1,000 to $75,000. Due to the overall number of claims filed by deadline, the surplus was prorated across all categories. More than 400 breast cancer patients or their survivors stand to receive compensation, according to Ches Crosbie, the lawyer who represented them in their class action suit.
Their lawyer was pleased with the way things turned out, suggesting, “this is the way class action should perform. It shows the benefit and merit.” The settlement reached with Eastern Health brings to a close a two-year effort by patients affected and their lawyer to seek compensation and acknowledgement of the botched hormone receptor tests, used to determine treatment for breast cancer patients.
During the time period the errors occurred, between 1997 and 2005, some 425 patients ended up with the wrong results from tests carried out at the immunohistochemistry lab in St. John’s. The whole fiasco has shaken many people’s faith in their health care system and opened wounds that will take some time to heal.
For many people it will take a long time to restore their faith in the health care system.
But the Cameron Inquiry and the recent settlement with the victims of this fiasco were both steps in the right direction. The public inquiry that investigated the testing errors, made some excellent recommendations, which, hopefully will be implemented.
Including legal fees, the total amount of the lawsuit against Eastern Health was $17.5 million. - $10 million of that amount was covered by Eastern Health’s insurance.
As one victim, who received compensation, put it, they had to hit them where it hurt most, the wallet.
Because humans and machines are not infallible, mistakes will be made. Indeed, we all make mistakes. History is riddled with them.
Let’s hope Eastern Health, government and all concerned have learned a lesson from all of this. And this is one sad chapter in our history, which will never repeat itself. Dear editor,
There was and still is a lot of talk, speculation, and promise, but very little details with regard to the MOU process that is supposed to save this province’s fishery.
The MOU partners — FFAW, seafood producers and the provincial government — or as I refer to them as the Coalition Against Rural Newfoundland And Labrador (CARNAL), continue to keep fishers and fish plant workers in the dark, no different than what the fish merchants of old used to do.
For this MOU process to work, no matter what form, CARNAL must have the feds cooperation and funds for it to succeed and based on the federal fisheries minister’s comments, there isn’t any monies forthcoming for a early retirement and buy-out package for the fishery.
All three members of CARNAL have stated that for the MOU to work, the federal government must input federal funds, but with no funds imminent the process is doomed for failure.
I understand the position of two of the entities of CARNAL. The processors’ soul purpose is to maximize profits, have total control of the fishery and to ensure the destruction of the inshore fleet and to greatly reduce the independent offshore fleet to be replaced by larger factory trawlers.
Governments have very little interest in the fishery and never will so long as crude oil is the king of revenues. Governments past, present, and in the future have wanted a population that is within a shouting distance from the TCH, and shutting down rural Newfoundland and Labrador is, for the most part, the goal of this current government. If this MOU process comes to fruition, then that goal will be achieved.
The FFAW is a different story altogether. The goal of most, if not all, unions are for the most part to maintain their current membership and actively campaign to increase membership by lobbying their employer to increase their workforce and