Duchoeny willing to fight RAMQ all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada

Steve Hatton

Chomedey resident, Frank Duchoeny, announced that he and his lawyer are prepared to take their court battle as far as the Supreme Court, if necessary, following the Régie de I'assurance-maladie du Québec's refusal to pay for his son's Cochlear Implant. "There's a potential of going to the Supreme Court by either party and you can never predict it," said Julius Grey, Duchoeny's lawyer, in a phone interview on January 31st.


However, he did express hopes that it would not come to that. The current legal battle could take three or four months, but a Supreme Court battle can take several years.


Later that same day, Duchoeny echoed his lawyer's sentiments to TCN, saying that he was willing to go before the Supreme Court if it became necessary.


"We, as parents, have the right to make informed decisions for our children," Duchoeny said.


Grey would not speculate on the case, but he did say he was pleased. "I feel satisfied with what I've done so far," said Grey.


The conflict arose when a team of doctors in Quebec City argued that the operation would not help Ryan. But every other doctor consulted by the family, including in the U.S. and Ontario were of the opinion that he would greatly benefit. Finally, the operation took place in Vermont, but RAMQ refused to pay the bill.


According to Frank, his son Ryan is doing "amazingly well." Before the implant, Ryan had difficulty communicating without help. In a doughnut shop, for instance, he would need his dad to accompany him to the counter because he could not tell the cashier what he would like. Since the implant, Ryan no longer has trouble making himself understood.