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Disclosure of Complaint and Disciplinary Information

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Unless there is consent from the medical practitioner for release of additional information, Certificates of Professional Conduct from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Nova Scotia will only include the following information further to complaints which have been lodged against medical practitioners.

Dates and particulars of any:

  • Hearing Committee decision;
  • finding of professional misconduct or conduct unbecoming;
  • suspension or revocation of licensure;
  • terms, conditions or limitations of licensure;
  • consensual reprimands;
  • recent cautions (within the last three years);
  • complaints resulting in dispositions other than Caution if, in the opinion of the Registrar, there is a pattern of complaints; or
  • open complaint(s).

Excepting the above, without the signed consent of the medical practitioner, a Certificate of Professional Conduct will not include:

  • information regarding complaints that have been dismissed or that have resulted in the medical practitioner being counseled;
  • information regarding complaints that have been resolved through a consensual process, unless inclusion of the information was a part of the agreement arising out of the consensual process.

Dispositions disclosed on a CPC are defined as follows: 

  • Caution is a warning from an Investigation Committee that a person may have breached the standards of professional ethics or practice in circumstances that are not determined under the Regulations to warrant a licensing sanction.
  • Reprimand is more serious than a Caution. A Reprimand is a disciplinary sanction. Where the Investigation Committee determines that the physician’s conduct merits a reprimand, it may only make this disposition with the physician’s consent. A Reprimand constitutes a finding of professional misconduct and is therefore recorded on the physician’s formal discipline record.
  • Referral to a Hearing Committee – In cases where the physician does not consent to a Reprimand and in all other cases where the Investigation Committee determines that such action is warranted, the matter is referred to a Hearing Committee.
  • Interim Sanction is a temporary restriction or suspension imposed on a physician’s licence by an Investigation Committee prior to the completion of the investigation of a complaint or outcome of a hearing. Interim sanctions are imposed only when immediate intervention is required in order to protect the public safety or the medical profession. This is not a disciplinary sanction.
  • Settlement Agreement – Where an Investigation Committee has referred a complaint to a Hearing Committee, the physician involved may, with the consent of legal counsel for the College, propose a settlement agreement for consideration by the Investigation Committee. The Committee may recommend acceptance of this agreement subject to approval by a Hearing Committee.