03:23am Saturday 29 February 2020

Response to Justice Susan Lang’s Review of the Motherisk Drug Testing Laboratory

Over the course of the past 12 months, SickKids has been cooperating fully with the independent review team, and recognizes the importance of the recommendations contained in the report.

“We deeply regret that practices in, and oversight of this particular program did not meet SickKids standards of excellence. We extend our apologies to anyone who feels they may have been impacted,” says Dr. Michael Apkon, President and CEO of SickKids. “SickKids is fully committed to addressing the recommendations and will work closely with the Commissioner once appointed. We remain resolved in our efforts to ensure that we have effective oversight and the highest standards of quality and safety in all of our programs.”

As a result of SickKids own internal review and our work with Justice Lang over the course of the past year, the organization has taken a number of actions including closing this laboratory. A summary of our findings and actions taken was made publicly available in October.

We continue to review all areas within the Hospital where the work may be considered to be ‘forensic’ in nature and will undertake further due diligence in all areas that are identified.  We have implemented a requirement that all summons and subpoenas when received by our clinicians and scientists be reviewed by our legal department. At the same time, SickKids is implementing a training program to ensure that staff who prepare reports and testify in court have the appropriate training and context with regards to their role and responsibilities.

We thank Justice Lang and her team for their comprehensive work. This is an extensive report, representing significant effort and consultation.  Our commitment to strong management controls and quality oversight has been amplified and reinforced over the course of this review, and will be strengthened even further as we move forward.   

For more information, please contact:
Matet Nebres
The Hospital for Sick Children

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