MONTREAL, May 6 /CNW Telbec/ - Following the death of Mr. Jean-Jacques
Sauvageau, which occurred on January 11th, 2008 in the waiting room of the
Clinique médicale Viau, Dr. Jacques Chaoulli proposes that, to ensure
patients' safety, every walk-in clinic should have a dedicated triage nurse.
Dr. Chaoulli does not agree with coroner Catherine Rudel-Tessier and her
expert witness, Dr. Colette Lachaîne: "It is not true that a doctor should
start resuscitation procedures on a person presenting all the signs of
unquestionable death, a corpse," Dr. Chaoulli explains.
Re-establishing the facts
Contrary to what has been said, the Clinique médicale Viau is not a
private clinic. It does not belong to Dr. Chaoulli and he is not a
shareholder. Dr. Chaoulli explains that the coroner unjustifiably caused
unnecessary anxiety amongst the population of Quebec by pretending that the
doctors at the Clinique médicale Viau had let a person die in the waiting room
without assisting him.
"These are very serious accusations, leading me to publicly intervene in
order to re-establish the truth", explains Dr. Chaoulli.
When Dr. Chaoulli was called to Mr. Sauvageau's side, he was already
dead. Dr. Luc Bessette, expert witness in this affair, asserted that when
confronted with the signs of unquestionable death in the case of Mr.
Sauvageau, it would have been inappropriate to proceed to resuscitation, and
that if he had been in Dr. Chaoulli's position, he would not have proceeded
any differently. The autopsy report revealed that Mr. Sauvageau dies due to
massive bilateral pulmonary embolisms, which demonstrates the accuracy of the
clinical conclusion that Dr. Chaoulli had reached about unquestionable death.
"This situation illustrates the need," according to Dr. Chaoulli, "to
have all walk-in medical clinics offer the services of a dedicated triage
nurse in order to prevent such unfortunate events from occurring again in the
The coroner and Dr. Lachaîne are wrong
Coroner Rudel-Tessier and Dr. Lachaîne claim that, within the first three
hours following a cardiorespiratory arrest, a doctor should undertake
resuscitation procedures, whatever the circumstances, except in extreme
situations such as a decapitation. According to Dr. Chaoulli, that is legally
false. Indeed, it is to the attention of police officers and emergency medical
technicians that these extreme criteria were enacted by the Government of
Québec in Section 5 of the Regulation respecting the identification of dead
bodies, since police officers and emergency medical technicians do not have
the necessary expertise to be able to issue a death statement except in
extreme situations such as decapitation. On the other hand, the protocol
signed by Dr Lachaîne, for the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux,
recognizes that a doctor on-site can produce a death report, given his/her
educational background in medicine, without having to comply with the extreme
criteria intended for police officers and emergency medical technicians.
Recognized for his integrity and his devotion, Dr. Chaoulli intends to
continue to act in the interests of the patients.
For further information:
For further information: Lucie Létourneau, (514) 998-4564