Physiotherapists are expected to comply with all professional obligations including Standards of Practice and Code of Ethical Conduct; however, complaints can happen.
The College of Physiotherapists of Alberta investigates complaints about its members. We do this to protect the public and help assure the delivery of quality and competent physiotherapy. All complaints are taken seriously, and each is considered an opportunity to improve member knowledge and physiotherapy service delivery. Complaints are processed in accordance with the Health Professions Act and decisions or actions taken by the College of Physiotherapists of Alberta can be reviewed by the provincial Ombudsman.
While we have the authority to investigate concerns and discipline members, financial compensation for negligence is a matter determined in civil court and we cannot direct a physiotherapist to provide financial compensation. Please seek legal advice if financial compensation is a concern.
All complaints are confidential and reviewed in the order they are received. Our process is designed to ensure fairness to both the complainant and physiotherapist.
After receiving your written complaint, you can expect that we will:
- Provide the physiotherapist in question with a copy of your complaint and request their response.
- Contact other individuals and institutions who may have relevant information and may provide one or more of these parties with a copy of your complaint.
- Gather and review information through interviews with you, the physiotherapist, other relevant parties as well as a review of your patient chart (clinical and financial records).
- Provide a written decision to you and the physiotherapist after the review.
Your complaint may be either resolved, dismissed or referred to a hearing. If there is insufficient or no evidence of unprofessional conduct or it is determined the complaint is trivial or vexatious your complaint will be resolved/dismissed.
If your complaint is dismissed without a hearing, you may request a review of the decision. The request for review must be made in writing, clearly indicate the reasons for the review, and received by the College of Physiotherapists of Alberta within 30 days of receiving notice to dismiss your complaint.
The fee for this review is $250. If you are not able to pay the Conduct Appeal Fee due to financial circumstances, you may apply for a waiver of the fee. The fee will be waived if your gross family income falls within the Income Thresholds listed on the Application Fee Waiver and Statement of Finances.