Mandatory Reports

Mandatory reporting is the legal obligation for all regulated health professionals, facility operators and employers. The College of Dietitians of Ontario has a responsibility to review or investigate mandatory reports received about Registered Dietitians for professional misconduct, incompetence, sexual abuse or incapacity. 

Reports alert the College to situations where a dietitian may not be practicing safely so that it can take the appropriate steps to protect the public. Responding to mandatory reports with appropriate action helps the College fulfill its public protection mandate, maintains trust in the dietetic profession and in the regulatory process.

Confidentiality and Privacy

A mandatory report is not a breach of confidentiality, even where a client or a patient does not want a report to be made. However, where sexual abuse of a client or a patient is suspected, written consent from the client is required before disclosing that person’s name to the College.

Mandatory Reports Under the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991

Mandatory reports must be made to the College about a Registered Dietitian for professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity.  A mandatory report must be submitted  to the College within 30 days for:

  • Terminating an employee; 
  • Terminating an association (e.g., partnership, contract, professional corporation) with another registered health practitioner for professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity; 
  • Ending a group practice because you could no longer tolerate a practitioner's conduct or incompetence, e.g., drinking or repetitive rudeness to clients; 
  • Intending to terminate an employee or associate but that person resigned or voluntarily relinquished their privileges;
  • Suspected sexual abuse of a client by another dietitian.

Mandatory Reports Under Other Legislation

The Child and Family Services Act, 1990

Any person who has a reasonable suspicion that a child is in need of protection needs to report that suspicion to the local Children's Aid Society. While everyone has this duty, it is an offence for a dietitian not to make a report when the information is obtained in the course of practising dietetics. 

For a report under the Child and Family Services Act, 1990, only reasonable grounds to "suspect", not "believe", is needed. This means that the degree of information suggesting that a child is in need of protection can be quite low. As the definition of a child in need of protection under the Child and Family Services Act, 1990, is quite lengthy and complex, when faced with potential child abuse where the health or safety of a child is threatened, dietitians are urged to get advice on reporting. You may get advice either from the Practice Advisor at the College, legal counsel or your organization's risk manager. 

The Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007

The Long-Term Care Homes Act, 2007, stipulates that a mandatory report must be made to the Director for: 

  1.  Improper or incompetent treatment or care of a resident that resulted in harm or a risk of harm to the resident.
  2.  Abuse of a resident by anyone or neglect of a resident by the licensee or staff that resulted in harm or a risk of harm to the resident.
  3. Unlawful conduct that resulted in harm or a risk of harm to a resident.
  4. Misuse or misappropriation of a resident’s money.
  5. Misuse or misappropriation of funding provided to a licensee under this Act or the Local Health System Integration Act

30 Days To Make the Report

  1.  Following a termination or suspension of an employee or dissolution of a partnership, employers or partners have 30 days to make a mandatory report the College.  
  2.   A dietitian must self-report to the College as soon as possible, but not later than within 30 days.
  3.   A report of sexual abuse must be made within 30 days unless there are reasonable grounds to believe that additional abuse may occur, in which case the report must be made immediately.
 

For further assistance, contact

the Registrar & Executive Director of the College at 
416-598-1725 / 1-800-668-4990, ext. 228