The following are summaries of some recent decisions of the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee reflecting three different dispositions. They are provided for educational purposes. Information in these summaries has been altered to protect the privacy of both members and complainants, and to protect the confidentiality of the investigation process. The relevant substance of the allegations and outcomes remain unchanged.
Appointment Cancellation Due to COVID-19 Symptoms: Decision – Take No Further Action
The complainant alleged that a member inappropriately cancelled his appointment after he disclosed that he had tested positive for COVID-19 three weeks prior and was still experiencing some fatigue and loss of smell. The complainant indicated that he been cleared of COVID-19 by his health care provider.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter appreciated the member’s acknowledgement of the frustration the client experienced at having his appointment cancelled. The panel noted however, that it was appropriate, and in keeping with public health policy, to cancel the appointment due to the presence of ongoing COVID-19 symptoms and in the absence of a current negative test. The panel decided to take no further action with respect to the matter.
Delayed Feedback: Decision – Advice
The complainant alleged that the member did not provide him with adequate and appropriate feedback after a psychological assessment. The complainant stated that he only learned of his diagnosis several years after the assessment.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter noted that the psychological assessment was in the context of a hospital’s Mental Health Team approach. Feedback appeared to have been provided during a joint session with multiple health professionals, several months after the psychological assessment. The panel believed that the context and timing of this feedback may have contributed to the complainant’s misunderstanding of the scope and purpose of that feedback. The panel therefore decided to provide the member with advice regarding the importance of ensuring that clients receive clear and timely feedback, even if this goes beyond the scope of what may be required or expected by a given workplace.
Obtaining Adequate Information to Support Conclusions: Decision – Undertakings
The complainant alleged that the member did not conduct an adequate psychoeducational assessment of her daughter since the member did not review any medical records or reports. The member indicated that he normally only reviews the information provided by the school board, since the main purpose of the assessment is to provide an opinion of the child’s current cognitive abilities in an educational setting.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter was concerned that the member’s approach to the assessment may have been inappropriately narrow. The panel believed that past medical history, assessments and treatment reports could provide relevant information, including information about possible regression or improvement, or whether psychological factors might be affecting current functioning. The panel also believed this information could be important in identifying possible reasons for the student’s ongoing school difficulties and in making professional recommendations for appropriate interventions and supports. The panel therefore requested that the member enter into an Acknowledgement and Undertaking, comprised of a Coaching program, to assist him to better understand the type of information he should obtain for these assessments.