Discernment and Insight

Regulators can refuse registration to applicants who demonstrate a pattern of lacking “discernment and insight” even if individually the events might not be disqualifying.

In I.B. v College of Massage Therapists of Ontario, 2018 CanLII 142416 (ON HPARB), http://canlii.ca/t/j0vzz a former practitioner applied for re-registration. The regulator declined to register him because of a history that included:

  • Seven previous suspensions of registration for both administrative lapses (e.g., not carrying insurance, non-payment of fees) and discipline;
  • Revocation of registration for non-payment of fees;
  • A discipline finding for practising while suspended;
  • Failing to pay all of the costs ordered at that discipline hearing despite it being a joint submission; and
  • Inaccurately describing and minimizing the nature of four criminal convictions (most related to impaired driving) including minimizing his personal responsibility for the conduct.

The appeal Board upheld the refusal to register him. In doing so it noted the following:

  • The applicant required the regulator to “expend considerable resources to administer his membership”.
  • The applicant “has not meaningfully demonstrated that he appreciates the nature of professional expectations and governability standards”.
  • The applicant has not demonstrated that he “possesses insight into the seriousness of his previous conduct and how such conduct can have significance in regard to a health professional’s responsibilities to the public and to the College”. On this point the Board noted that patients, insurance companies and others rely on practitioners to accurately provide information including about their registration status.

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