Bill 87: Protecting Patients Act
The Protecting Patients Act was given Royal Assent on May 30, 2017. That legislation makes several important changes to the Regulated Health Professions Act.
- The purposes for which the Minister may require a College to collect information from members under section 36.1 of the Act are expanded to include health human resources research.
- The Minister is given the power to make regulations respecting College committees and panels.
- The matters that a College is required to note in its register are expanded.
- For the purposes of the sexual abuse provisions of the Code, the definition of “patient”, without restricting the ordinary meaning of the term, is expanded to include an individual who was a member’s patient within the last year or within such longer period of time as may be prescribed from the date on which they ceased to be a patient, and an individual who is determined to be a patient in accordance with the criteria set out in regulations.
- The Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee and its panels may make an order for the interim suspension of a member’s certificate of registration at any time following the receipt of a complaint or after the appointment of an investigator, instead of only when a matter is referred for discipline or incapacity proceedings.
- The imposition of gender-based terms, conditions or limitations on a member’s certificate of registration is prohibited.
- The grounds for mandatory revocation of the certificate of registration of a member who has sexually abused a patient are expanded, and suspension is made mandatory in sexual abuse cases that do not involve conduct requiring mandatory revocation.
- Members are required to report to the Registrar if they belong to professional bodies outside Ontario, and if there has been a finding of professional misconduct or incompetence against them by such a body.
- Members are required to report to the Registrar if they are charged with an offence, and are required to provide information about bail conditions.
- The mandatory program for Colleges to provide funding for therapy and counselling for patients who were sexually abused by members is expanded to apply to persons who are alleged to have been sexually abused while a patient, and to provide funding for other purposes provided for in regulations.
- The penalties for failing to report sexual abuse of patients are increased.