Dialogue Volume 12 Issue 3 2016 - Page 48

discipline summaries lifestyle modifications for the management of hypercholesterolemia and hypertension for his patients and for supporting the SDA claim for his patients. Reasons for Penalty The Committee concluded that the jointly proposed order was appropriate in the circumstances of this case. In considering the proposed penalty, the Committee concluded that it properly expresses disapproval of Dr. Otto’s behaviour in this matter; that its requirements address the need to maintain public confidence in the profession and its ability to self-regulate; that it protects the public; that it acts both generally and specifically as a deterrent; and that it affords an opportunity for rehabilitation of the member. With the goal of protecting the public, t he Committee notes that Dr. Otto’s transgression related only to the issue of Special Diet Allowance (SDA) applications. In this regard, the requirement for monitoring and co-signing such applications as a condition on Dr. Otto’s certificate of registration provides permanent oversight and accountability. The fine imposed and the suspension of Dr. Otto’s certificate of registration for two months is an appropriate response to the seriousness of the misconduct and acts as both specific deterrence for Dr. Otto and general deterrence for the profession. The Committee determined that the completion of an educational program in ethics and the medical record-keeping course, the latter of which has already been completed by Dr. Otto, combined with the requirement to consult the assigned monitor on each occasion an SDA is considered, provide significant opportunity for rehabilitation and learning as well as public protection. The Committee took into account a number of aggravating and mitigating factors identified as pertinent to the jointly proposed penalty. Aggravating factors included the seriousness of the matter, the demonstrated lack of integrity, personal financial gain and persistence, to some degree, after the matter had been addressed by a Ministry review and the findings of an expert retained by the College. With respect to mitigating factors, the Committee took into account that Dr. Otto has no prior disciplinary history; he admitted to professional misconduct; has accepted responsibility for his poor judgment and breach of professional stan- 48 Dialogue Issue 3, 2016 dards; has assisted the College in avoiding a prolonged and contested hearing; and has cooperated with the College throughout. The Committee also notes that Dr. Otto’s career involves serving a significantly disadvantaged population. In summary, the Discipline Committee ordered the following: a public reprimand; a two-month suspension on Dr. Otto’s certificate of registration; terms, conditions and limitation on Dr. Otto’s certificate of registration that include successful completion of an ethics program, limitations on his use of Special Diet Allowance forms, unannounced inspections of his practice, monitoring of his OHIP billings; payment of a fine to the Minister of Finance in the amount of $10,000; and payment to the College for costs in the amount of $4,460. Order For complete details of the Order, please see the full decision at www.cpso.on.ca. Select Doctor Search and enter the Doctor’s Name. At the conclusion of the hearing, Dr. Otto waived his right to an appeal and the Committee administered the public reprimand. Text of Public Reprimand It’s always regrettable to be in a position of having to deliver a reprimand to any member of the profession. The Committee has heard evidence of a long record of service to a disadvantaged community, and it is particularly troubling to hear that you’ve dishonoured the profession after such a long and dedicated history of service. The medical system is based on trust, both in discharging your obligations to your patients, and in your role as a health-system advocate. You have failed to uphold the Standards of the Profession. To label this conduct as unprofessional significantly understates its severity. By billing inappropriately and improperly you have disgraced yourself and the profession. It is hoped by understanding and accepting this censure by the profession and from your colleagues; you will conscientiously discharge the conditions of your penalty and not be seen again in this chamber.