Date of Action:
June 12, 2020
Nature of Action: Pursuant to section 35(1)(a) of the Health Professions Act (the “Act”), a panel of the Inquiry Committee made an order to impose a limit on Brent Rowland’s practice of massage therapy. The limit is that Mr. Rowland is prohibited from treating female patients.
Reasons: The Inquiry Committee initiated an investigation on its own motion regarding Mr. Rowland, based on information received from members of the public, which included in part allegations that Mr. Rowland has engaged in the following conduct:
The College’s Code of Ethics defines “sexual misconduct” to include sexual intercourse or other forms of physical sexual relations between an RMT and a patient; touching, of a sexual nature, of a patient by an RMT; behaviour or remarks of a sexual nature by an RMT towards a patient; or sexualizing the treatment environment.
The Inquiry Committee panel was satisfied that there is a prima facie case of sexual misconduct in relation to the two allegations set out above, and that the evidence was not manifestly unfounded, unreliable or exaggerated. The Inquiry Committee panel found that the allegations are serious and there is a real risk of harm to patients if Mr. Rowland were allowed to continue to practice without restriction.
The Inquiry Committee panel considered different interim measures to protect the public. Having weighed the different options and the circumstances of this case, and having weighed the impact of interim measures on the registrant, the panel concluded that a condition barring Mr. Rowland from treating female patients is proportionate and necessary to protect the public during the investigation or pending a hearing of the Discipline Committee.
The panel also found there to be a prima facie case of conduct unbecoming in relation to a separate allegation; however, the panel did not see a real and immediate risk of harm to patients, colleagues, or other members of the public in respect of this allegation specifically.
Important Note: Limits, conditions and suspensions ordered by the Inquiry Committee under section 35(1) of the Act are made to protect the public during an investigation or pending a hearing of the Discipline Committee. Measures taken under section 35(1) of the Act pertain to allegations which are and remain unproven unless admitted by a registrant or determined by the Discipline Committee.