The following are summaries of some recent decisions of the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports C 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.
Sufficient Transfer of Care: Decision: Take No Further Action
The College received a mandatory report under section 85.5 of the Health Professions Procedural Code being Schedule 2 of the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 regarding a member’s termination from employment due to issues with client records. The reporter also alleged that upon termination, the member failed to provide sufficient transfer of care instructions for clients.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter noted that there appeared to be issues with the electronic records management system at the clinic, and that the member raised and documented these issues several times. The panel did not identify any concerns with respect to the member’s notes. Finally, the panel did not believe that the time allotted to provide all client information upon termination was reasonable under the circumstances, and that the member appeared to have made efforts to provide appropriate transfer of care. The panel therefore decided to Take no further action with respect to the report.
Missed Opportunity for Supervision: Decision – Advice
A complainant alleged that a member’s supervisee had made inappropriate comments about clients and breached client confidentiality in social situations. The complainant was not a client of the member or the supervisee.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter noted that the member did not appear to give any credence to the allegations, although the member did acknowledge that similar allegations appeared to have arisen in a different context. While the panel did not believe the member could be held responsible for the supervisee’s alleged comments, it did believe the member could have addressed these concerns directly with the supervisee. The panel Advised the member to consider providing the supervisee with additional training in ethics and boundaries.
Professional Objectivity: Decision – Undertakings
The complainant and her spouse received individual and joint therapy from a member for many years. Following their marital breakdown, the former couple sought mediation services with respect to this breakdown and their separation agreement. The complainant alleged that while providing this mediation, the member took her former spouse’s side against her.
The panel of the ICRC considering this matter was concerned that the member did not appear to have the background or qualifications necessary to navigate this situation, which would have posed a challenge to an experienced practitioner. The panel noted that given the member’s lack of experience in family mediation and his previous therapeutic relationship with the clients, it may have been appropriate to refer the clients to a trained family mediator rather than attempt to provide the mediation himself. The panel decided it would be appropriate and in the public interest to ask the member to enter into an Undertaking, comprised of a Coaching Program, to address this and other noted concerns.