College Blog 

In the spirit of transparency, we encourage open debate and constructive criticism via comments. For this to be effective, comments need to remain professional and respectful. Comments will be reviewed and posts that include personal attacks, unfounded allegations, unverified facts, product pitches, or profanity will not be published. 

Contact the College
Watch our Videos

  • What if Your Colleague Made a Mistake But You Got Punished?

    Jul 09, 2014

    A few years ago the British Parliament was considering how they could improve patient safety after a series of crushing hospital incidents. And here is what the members of parliament said, “Doctors could risk losing their licence if they fail to report fitness to practise concerns about their colleagues.”[1] Do you think about that for physiotherapy? Do you wonder about your obligation to report your colleagues?

    Maybe you watched while Susan, who was teaching Mrs. Hall to climb the stairs on crutches after hip surgery, left her alone to take a phone call. Or you think that Claire may be showing signs of age-related cognitive decline. Perhaps you know that Joe down the hall sometimes asks his pretty patients on lunch dates. Maybe you heard your boss offering patients invoices for PT services when the service was really personal training.

    Here’s the thing: if self-regulation is built on the belief that physiotherapists are in the best position to set the standards for physiotherapy, then physiotherapists are also in the best position to identify when those standards have been breached.

    I am sure that most of you believe that if a PT’s functioning is impaired due to substance abuse, mental health problems or incompetence, patients may be put to risk. And your feedback to the College has been clear—you hate dishonest business dealings. And yet most health professionals do not report their colleagues. In one study only 37% of nurses who have experienced working with impaired colleagues reported them.[2] It’s no different for physiotherapists: in a study from Australia, only 19% of the participants indicated they would report to the Board if they were aware of sexual misconduct by a colleague.[3]

    Your partnership with your colleagues and your membership in the profession creates bonds of loyalty that can make it very difficult for you to step forward. We understand that. Maybe it would help you to know that we will never take any action without proof and where there are health concerns we will always take great care over the well-being of the physio.

    But if you believe in physiotherapy as a true self-regulating profession, you can’t turn your back. Sure, there are legal obligations to report in some cases, but I am talking about more than that. I am talking about making sure that the people that you work with meet your own expectations for your profession. And when they don’t, I am talking about taking action. First line might be to speak with your colleague directly, but in cases of true patient risk or legal responsibility you will need to take stronger action. Tell your supervisor. Call the College. Call the police or Children’s Aid if you need to. Because as much as offering therapeutic care, monitoring your colleagues is part of being a physio.

    What do you think: Should physiotherapists be investigated for failing to report concerns? Have you ever reported a concern? What happened?

     

    ___________________________

    [1] Helen Jaques, “Doctors should to be held to account for behaviour of colleagues, say MPs,” BMJ 2011;343:d4794.

    [2] J.W. Beckstead, “Modeling attitudinal antecedents of nurses’ decisions to report impaired colleagues,” Western Journal of Nursing Research, 2002 Aug;24(5):537-51.

    [3] I. Cooper and S. Jenkins, “Sexual boundaries between physiotherapists and patients are not perceived clearly: an observational study”, Australian Journal of Physiotherapy 2008;54(4):275-9.

    A few years ago the British Parliament was considering how they could improve patient safety after a series of crushing hospital incidents. And here is what the members of parliament said, “Doctors could risk losing their licence if they fail to report fitness to practise concerns about their colleagues.”[1] Do you think about that for […]
    Full story
    • Professionalism
    • Reporting
    • Standards
    • Australia
    • breached
    • British Parliament
    • cases
    • Children’s Aid
    • Colleague
    • colleagues
    • College
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • concerns
    • CPO
    • Doctors
    • expectations
    • fail to report
    • failing to report concerns
    • feedback
    • fitness to practise
    • health concerns
    • hospital incidents
    • identify
    • impaired substance abuse
    • incompetence
    • investigated
    • legal obligations
    • losing licence
    • members of parliament
    • mental health problems
    • Mistake
    • monitoring
    • nurses
    • obligation
    • patient safety
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy
    • police
    • profession
    • public interest
    • Punished
    • regulation
    • report
    • risk
    • scope of practice
    • self-regulation
    • sexual misconduct
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • standards for physiotherapy
    • supervisor
    • take action
    • the Board
  • Why is the College such a lousy advocate for PTs?

    Jun 10, 2014
    Hi Everyone—the headline is a trick question. We aren’t advocates for physiotherapy or physiotherapists at all. We aren’t even allowed to be. The legislation that creates the College of Physiotherapists (and all the other health colleges in Ontario) gives us our power but also limits our power. It creates the College for the purpose of […]
    Full story
    • Policy
    • College
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • CPO
    • funding changes
    • funding model
    • Ontario Physiotherapy Association
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • public interest
    • regulation
    • scope of practice
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
  • Clinic Regulation: Now What?

    May 20, 2014
    Two posts ago, I asked you whether you thought that the College ought to regulate clinics in addition to the physiotherapists who work in them. The overwhelming majority of comments favoured this idea. You told us that College regulation would mean higher quality care in the clinics and that it would make them safer places […]
    Full story
    • Regulation of Clniics
    • clinic regulation
    • clinics
    • College
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • comment
    • Council
    • inappropriate business practices
    • Patients
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy
    • physiotherapy clinics
    • protect the public
    • public interest
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
  • Advertising and Physiotherapy: Where Do You Draw the Line?

    Apr 07, 2014
    Some of you are familiar with the Advertising Standard. Among other things, it prohibits endorsements, testimonials, superlatives and anything that could be interpreted as promoting a demand for unnecessary services. I know some of you hate it. I have heard from you that it is not fair that you must compete with unregulated clinic owners […]
    Full story
    • Policy
    • Standards
    • accountability
    • advertising
    • advertising regulations
    • College
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • Groupon
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy
    • professional standards
    • protect the public
    • public
    • public interest
    • self-regulation
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • SocialLiving
    • unprofessional behaviours
    • WagJag
  • Should the College Regulate Physiotherapy Clinics? Thanks for the Feedback!

    Apr 03, 2014
    Thank you for all your input on the issue of whether the College ought to regulate clinics. We left the blog post up for longer than usual because new comments kept coming in. The College will be exploring the potential for clinic regulation over the next few years. Watch Perspectives or the website for updates […]
    Full story
    • Policy
    • Auto Insurance Anti-Fraud investigation
    • billing
    • College
    • College Council President
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • government
    • health care
    • health care fraud
    • Ontario
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy
    • physiotherapy clinics
    • protect the public
    • public interest
    • Registrar
    • regulate
    • regulation
    • regulatory
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • The College
  • Should the College Regulate Physiotherapy Clinics?

    Jan 31, 2014
    I have been thinking about fraudulent billing practices a lot lately. Not such a cheerful way to begin the New Year, I know. This won’t come as much of a surprise to you if you have been following the College’s activities over the past 18 months: one of our strategic goals is to improve the […]
    Full story
    • Policy
    • billing
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • HCAI
    • health care fraud
    • Health Claims for Auto Insurance
    • IBC
    • inappropriate billing
    • Insurance Bureau of Canada
    • PCT
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy clinics
    • professional credential tracker
    • PT clinics
    • public interest
    • public safety
    • registration number
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • The College
    • title protection
  • Do You Know What Physiotherapy Is?

    Nov 26, 2013
    As some of you may know, I am a lawyer. But that doesn’t mean I am practicing law when I am acting as the College Registrar. I am not, although I believe my legal training helps me to perform well. When our Practice Advisor, Shelley Martin, is talking to you on the phone, she isn’t […]
    Full story
    • Policy
    • Canadian Physiotherapy Association
    • College
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • College Registrar
    • Description of Physiotherapy in Canada
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • Physiotherapy Act
    • Practice Advisor
    • protect the public
    • public
    • Registrar
    • regulation
    • regulatory
    • Shelley Martin
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • submit questions
    • title of Physiotherapist
    • Zerona®
  • Dear Private Clinic PT

    Nov 13, 2013
    Are you providing publicly paid treatment? How are you settling in to the funding changes? Those of you who have been here before may remember that my first blog was about whether the College should take action against those people who had allegedly been billing OHIP excessively. At least that’s what I thought it was […]
    Full story
    • OHIP Funding
    • #CPOWebinar
    • advice
    • billing
    • blog
    • College of Physiotherapists
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • comment
    • deliver quality care
    • funding changes
    • funding model
    • Kingston
    • legislation
    • manage
    • new system
    • November 21
    • OHIP
    • Ontario Physiotherapy Association
    • partnering
    • physiotherapists
    • physiotherapy
    • public interest
    • publicly paid treatment
    • quality care
    • Queen's University
    • questions
    • register
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • Sign up
    • submit questions
    • The College
    • tweet
    • webinar
  • What Kind of College Should We Be?

    Oct 17, 2013
    In Ontario, the College of Chiropractors exempts new graduates from paying a registration fee in the year their first certificate is issued. New dentists pay a proportion of the fee depending on the month they enter practice. Respiratory therapists, whether they are new grads or returning to practice after an absence, pay a proportion of […]
    Full story
    • Shenda's Blog
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • returning to practice
    • regulation
    • registration fee
    • Registrar
    • Policy
    • physiotherapists
    • physical therapists
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • College
  • Funding Changes to Physiotherapy—Where’s CPO in all of this?

    Sep 04, 2013
    Thanks for stopping by to read my first blog. I am hopeful that you’ll stay long enough to leave a comment and tell me what you think about this issue. The purpose of Shenda’s Blog is to generate discussion around things that matter to patients, the public, physiotherapists and anyone touched by the regulatory world, […]
    Full story
    • OHIP Funding
    • Auto Insurance Anti-Fraud investigation
    • billing
    • clinics
    • College
    • College Council President
    • College of Physiotherapists of Ontario
    • designated OHIP clinics
    • funding changes
    • funding model
    • generate discussion
    • investigations
    • John Spirou
    • OHIP
    • Patients
    • physical therapists
    • physiotherapists
    • protect the public
    • public
    • Registrar
    • regulation
    • regulatory
    • Shenda Tanchak
    • Shenda's Blog
    • Toronto Star

Contact the Practice Advisor

Free and anonymous counsel for PTs, patients, & the public. Learn More 

practiceadvice@collegept.org
416-591-3828 ext. 241
1-800-583-5885 ext. 241