Complaints Committee

Detailed information regarding the composition, authority and formal requirements of the Complaints Committee is contained in its Terms of Reference.

In addition to generally overseeing the handling of all complaints in accordance with an established process, the Complaints Committee meets regularly to consider matters that have been referred to it.

Method of Review

The Complaints Committee does not meet with the complainant or the physician.  It conducts a review of the documentation only.
Usually, that involves considering:

  • the complaint;
  • the physician’s response to the complaint;
  • the complainant’s reply to the response of the physician, if any;
  • other records and documents relevant to the complaint that have been collected by the medical consultant, such as the record of the care provided to the complainant by the physician.

Possible Outcomes:

The Complaints Committee may do one or more of the following:

  • advise that it believes the physician’s conduct or care was appropriate;
  • advise the physician in writing about the practice of medicine if the Committee believes the physician would benefit from some advice or direction as to how to conduct him or herself in the future;
  • refer the matter to another College committee;
  • refer the matter to such other body as it may deem appropriate provided that such referral in in accordance with section 140 of the RHPA;
  • ask the College to communicate its views on an issue to the medical profession for education purposes; or
  • refer the matter to the Investigation Committee for a more in-depth and formal review.

Communication of Complaints Committee Decision
The results of the Complaints Committee review will be communicated to the complainant and the physician in writing.   The decision is usually sent out within two weeks of the decision being made.

Referral to the Investigation Committee

Where a complainant is not satisfied with the Complaints Committee’s decision in relation to his/her complaint, he or she has the right to request that the matter be referred to the Investigation Committee for further review. That right must be exercised within thirty days of notification of the decision. The College does not have the authority to extend this deadline. The physician does not have a right to request referral to the Investigation Committee.