A health care professional is in a position of power over a patient. This is because a health care professional has knowledge and skills that a patient must rely on for their well-being. In addition, they have access to patients’ personal health information. Health care professionals must always maintain professional boundaries with their patients. They are prohibited from engaging in any form of sexual abuse or sexual misconduct as defined by law in the Health Professions Act with a patient.
Sexual Abuse and Sexual Misconduct Complaints Process
We recognize that coming forward with a complaint about sexual abuse or sexual misconduct can be very difficult. When you call for assistance or to make a complaint, you will speak the Complaints Director. This person has specific training in the area of sexual abuse and sexual misconduct. The Complaints Director is very familiar with the College’s complaint process and can give you an idea of what to expect. They will not take statements or conduct investigations. You can speak to this person on the phone by calling 780-436-8381. You can remain anonymous, use an alias, or arrange to meet in person. If you then decide to make a formal complaint, it must be submitted in writing and signed. When your complaint is received, the Complaints Director may appoint an investigator to conduct an investigation. The investigator will contact you to discuss your concerns and obtain additional information. If you prefer, you can meet in person. The investigator will ask you to explain what happened as clearly and in as much detail as you can possibly provide. Legislation requires us to notify the health care professional of your complaint and the health care professional is given the opportunity to respond to it. With your consent, other people with information about the incident or documents related to the complaint such as hospital, Alberta Health Care or pharmaceutical records maybe gathered as part of the investigation. Your complaint is handled with the utmost seriousness, and all complaints will be fully investigated. When the investigation is complete, all the materials gathered by the investigator are given to the Complaints Director of our College who reviews the information and decides what should happen. The Complaints Director may decide to refer the concerns about the occupational therapist to the Hearing Tribunal or may determine no further action is needed if the conduct or care was appropriate. Read more