Canada warnings about meds should be more consistent with other countries: UBC study

Professor calls on Health Canada to be more transparent in providing easily accessible information

The lead investigator of a new study and says that between 2007 and 2016, Health Canada issued safety warnings for only 50 per cent of drug-safety issues identified in the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom. (Black Press Media file photo)

A University of British Columbia professor says Health Canada needs to be more consistent with other countries when it comes to issuing warnings about the safety risks of certain medications, especially if other countries have already advised patients taking the same drugs.

Barbara Mintzes is the lead investigator of a new study and says that between 2007 and 2016, Health Canada issued safety warnings for only 50 per cent of drug-safety issues identified in the United States, Australia and the United Kingdom.

READ MORE: Pan-Canada health database to launch with federal funding

She joined researchers in analyzing 1,441 advisories over that period and found regulators in all four countries were only consistent in the decision to warn their populations 10 per cent of the time regarding issues with the same medication.

The affiliate associate professor at UBC’s School of Population and Public Health is also calling on Health Canada to be more transparent in providing patients with easily accessible online information about adverse reactions involving various drugs.

Health Canada did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

The study is published in JAMA Internal Medicine, published by the American Medical Association, and also involves researches from York University in Toronto and the University of Sydney in Australia.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Burns Lake sees a peaceful protest denouncing the police killing of George Floyd

Cheryl Casimir, a member of the task group for First Nations Summit… Continue reading

School buses for SD91 to start running from June 1

Parents urged to drop off and pick kids up whenever possible

COVID-19 highlights lack of connectivity in First Nations communities

Many don’t have access required to utilize online platforms, says First Nations Technology Council

Salmon closures announced for Skeena and Nass watersheds

DFO notice expands on May 21 chinook ban throughout Skeena watershed

New traffic lanes for Six Mile west of Burns Lake coming soon

Construction to begin on lane extension and traffic improvement

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Bateman program encourages people to sketch outside, connect with nature

#MyNatureSketch initiative encourages Canadians to become ‘bright-eyed three year olds’

Be cautious expanding COVID-19 bubble, Dr. Bonnie Henry tells B.C.

Senior homes stay off-limits as schools, businesses reopen

Most Read