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Sexual Abuse of Patients - Who is a Patient Anyway?


Earlier this year the Regulated Health Professions Act was modernized...

Or was it?

In the spring of 2018, certain new provisions within this umbrella statute came into force. For example new or changed sections of the Act include updated proceedings regarding sexual abuse of a patient, definitions of what constitutes sexual abuse, and other proceedings and rules surrounding members' requirements to report to the College and publication of certain information.

The Act makes it clear that there is a one year prohibition on the initiation (or maintaining) of a sexual relationship after the termination of the patient relationship.

However, the Act does not provide that a College must grant an exemption to treating your spouse. In fact, some College, while permitted, have not granted this exemption. This seems arbitrary, not modern, and paternalistic.

For example, the College of Dental Hygienists does not provide an exemption to the treating of spouses. Dental hygienists beware. Do not clean your wife/husbands teeth!

If you do not agree with the current state of the law, write to your MPP and let them know.