REVOKED - Case: 2009 0001

Duvage, Rupasinghe—Registration #07401

March 31, 2011
The following is a summary of a matter placed before a five member panel of the Discipline Committee of the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario on March 31, 2011. 


In July 2008 the College received information concerning certain aspects of Mr. Duvage’s practice. At the conclusion of the investigation the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee of the College referred the matter to the Discipline Committee for a hearing. 

The Facts as Agreed to by the Parties

Improper Billing
Mr. Duvage sent invoices to a third party payor for massage therapy treatment in relation to several of his family members and other patients when no such treatment was provided. 

Falsification of Referral Slips
Mr. Duvage falsified or permitted to be falsified physician referral slips by a physician for himself and his family members.

Practising Physiotherapy while Suspended
Mr. Duvage completed or permitted to be completed claim forms in his name during periods when his certificate of registration was suspended pursuant to a 2005 order of the Discipline Committee of the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario.

Falsification of Signature
Mr. Duvage falsified or permitted to be falsified the signature of a massage therapist on a claim submitted to a third party payor.

Improper Creation of Billing Records
Mr. Duvage created or permitted to be created “appointment note tables” using a computer software program for the purpose of trying to substantiate one or more of the invoices for massage therapy submitted to a third party payor

False Statements to the Investigator
Mr. Duvage made false statements to the College’s investigators during the course of the investigation. 

The Member’s Plea 
At the hearing, Mr. Duvage admitted to the allegations and the fact that his actions constituted professional misconduct. 


The Panel agreed that Mr. Duvage’s conduct constituted professional misconduct. This finding was made in accordance with paragraphs 14, 16, 18, 25 and 33 of section 1 of O.Reg.861/93 (Professional Misconduct Regulation), as amended under the Physiotherapy Act, 1991.  

14. Falsifying a record
16. Signing or issuing a document containing a statement that the member knows or ought to know contains a false or misleading statement
18. Submitting an account or a charge for services that the member knows or ought to know is false or misleading
25. Engaging in conduct or performing an act that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members as disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional 
33.Directly or indirectly benefitting from the practice of physiotherapy while his certificate of registration was suspended in circumstances where he did not have the consent of either the Executive Committee or a panel of the Discipline Committee that imposed the suspension. 

In addition, the panel found that Mr. Duvage committed an act of professional misconduct in accordance with paragraph 8 of section 1 of O.Reg.388/08 (Professional Misconduct Regulation), as amended under the Physiotherapy Act, 1991.  

Penalty and Costs

The panel ordered that the Registrar be directed to revoke the certificate of registration of Mr. Duvage.  

The Panel’s Reasons

In determining the appropriate penalty, the Panel took into consideration the interest of the public and the serious nature of the offence(s) and determined that the registrant’s conduct demonstrated a serious disregard for his basic professional obligations. 

The panel is of the view that Mr. Duvage’s conduct and behaviour was egregious in the extreme. He is either unable or unwilling to abide by the rules of the College and as such is ungovernable. As a result, and notwithstanding the mitigating circumstances referred to by counsel, the only reasonable decision by way of penalty is revocation of his certificate of registration. To do other than this would not adequately fulfill the legislative requirement of acting in the public interest because Mr. Duvage would be in a position in the future to victimize the public without first establishing to the satisfaction of another panel of the Discipline Committee that he should be given the right to be reinstated as a member of the physiotherapy profession. In the panel’s view, this penalty adequately addresses the need to provide specific deterrence to Mr. Duvage. It also addressed the need to provide general deterrence to members of the physiotherapy profession because other registrants reading this Decision will receive a clear message that this type of conduct will not be tolerated and will result in severe sanctions.
Read about the Past Discipline Hearings Results held by the College at the Canadian Legal Information Institute (for complete decisions released after April 1, 2015). 

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