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Concerns about a Doctor’s Health

When a doctor isn’t well, physically or mentally, it can impact their ability to practise medicine safely. We’re here to support them and help them get back to full health.

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Anyone can make a report

Reporting an unwell doctor can be uncomfortable, but it's often the right thing to do. If you aren’t sure you want to make a formal report, you can speak to someone about your concerns and get more information. Call the Patient and Public Help Centre at 416-967-2603 or 1-800-268-7096, ext. 603. 

Some doctors may be required to make a report 

If you are in a leadership position in a health care facility and you believe a doctor working with you is incapacitated, you are required to make a report to the College. If you’re a doctor with a physician patient and you have reason to believe that providing information about your patient’s condition may eliminate or reduce harm to their patients or others, we encourage you to make a report to the College. For guidance about your reporting obligations, please refer to the CPSO’s Mandatory and Permissive Reporting policy.

Will the doctor be told I notified the CPSO?

It’s our policy to be open and transparent with doctors when a concern is raised about them. If privacy is important to you, let us know. We may be able to provide the doctor with information without disclosing your name. However, we cannot promise that your name will never be given to the doctor. 

What happens next?

We work with doctors as sensitively as we can to explore steps they may be willing to take, or have already taken, to address their health concerns. 

There are several possible outcomes. We may:

  • Take no further action.
  • Ask the doctor to agree to some form of health and/or workplace monitoring.
  • Impose restrictions on the doctor’s practice, or ask them to do so voluntarily.
  • Refer the doctor for a hearing before the Fitness to Practise Committee.

If you know an Ontario doctor who may have a health concern affecting their ability to practise safely, call us at 416-967-2603 or 1-800-268-7096, ext. 603.

To learn about other ways you can help, contact Physician Health Program of the Ontario Medical Association.