Eesti Ekspress violated against good journalistic practice
Our attorneys Monica Pihlak, Kirke Treial and Kalev Pihlak achieved a very significant outcome for the benefit of our client CBF Medical OÜ (Christinas Clinic).
The Press Council made a decision reviewing our client’s appeal on 14.11.2019, in which they found that “Eesti Ekspress violated against the Code of Ethics of the Estonian Press section 1.4., which states that a journalist shall be responsible for his or her own statements and work and also that media organizations shall undertake to prevent the publication of inaccurate, distorted or misleading information. The Press Council found that claiming the surgeon performing the operation lacked an operating license for plastic and reconstructive surgery made the article inaccurate. The materials presented to the Press Council show that OÜ CBF Medical, operating under the name Christinas Clinic, has been issued an operating license, which among others allows the company to provide services in general day surgery, plastic day surgery as well as plastic and reconstructive surgery. The surgeon named in the article has been certified competent by the Estonian Association of Surgeons to function as a general surgeon and thereby is allowed to perform plastic surgery procedures, apart from the facial area.
In the Press Council’s opinion, the journalist should have checked the validity of the facts in the article from their original sources and should have given the other side an opportunity to present their views on the subject. Because it was in the patient’s interests to publish information on her breast enhancement operation in a periodic journal, it was incorrect to omit the other side, the target of the accusations, from their right to make a statement of their own on the claims that due to the law the clinic could not have commented on the issue anyway. The Press Council found that the clinic could very well have commented on the issue especially considering that in the article the patient was being presented under a fake name with nothing more than publicised of her identity than her age and a few photographs of her breasts.”