May 1, 2013
by Oral Health
Our thanks to Oral Health for keeping the spousal exemption issue at the fore front for Ontario dentists and their spouses by publishing Dr. Randy Lang’s editorial ‘Ontario’s Dumb, Stupid “Zero Tolerance” Law; September 2012. (https://www.oralhealthgroup.com/news/ontarios-dumb-stupid-zero-tolerance-law/1001656652/)
Recognition of the Coalition to Restore Spousal Rights and Freedoms by Oral Health Journal is appreciated and we should include all those dentists and spouses that financially helped to support the website’s efforts and costs. We would also like to recognize and thank Terry Nason and the team at Pro3D Multimedia for all their work on this project. They are dental marketing specialists who designed and maintained our website and managed the ongoing social marketing campaign. Terry also provided financial support and personally took on the challenge for health professionals’ spouses’ freedom to be able to choose the Regulated Health Professional of their choice. This company understands the needs of dentists and can be a great resource for anyone needing help with their online or offline marketing.
The Royal College of Dentists Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO) has always fully supported an exemption for spouses since this legislation came in to force in 1993. In August 2012 the RCDSO said they had sent all the information requested by the government that the government needed to facilitate a process for a legislated spousal exemption.
The ODA has been in constant communication with the Members of Provincial Parliament, Ministers and their staff about amending the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 (RHPA) to ensure a spousal exemption. The ODA continues to ask all parties of the legislature to work together for timely passage of legislation.
Please continue to collect signatures in support of the ODA’s petition to the Legislature that asks for an immediate exemption for dentists from the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 with regard to spousal treatment. The collections of signatures is still important and please continue to send them to Maggie Head, Government Relations Manager, Ontario Dental Association, at 4 New Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5R 1P6.
The Coalition of Spouses website will be signing off soon because donations have been exhausted. We would like to extend our sincere appreciation to all who actively took part in the verbal and written submissions before the Health Professions Regulatory Advisory Council (HPRAC) sessions.
Before the HPRAC report was released in June, then Premier Dalton McGuinty forwarded my letter to the Minister of Health’s office indicating that the government of the day would wait for the HPRAC report and recommendations before informing the profession of what the government would do in terms of legislative amendments The HPRAC report recognizes what was being recommended 20 years ago!
When Premier McGuinty prorogued the legislature last year, Mr. Steve Clark, MPP for Leeds-Grenville’s Bill, that sought to amend the RHPA to allow spousal treatment, unfortunately died on the Order Paper of the Legislature. However, Steve will try again to introduce legislation this session which will allow each College to determine if spousal treatment is appropriate for its members.
We have on behalf of the Coalition of Spouses written a letter, as before, to our new Premier Kathleen Wynne and Health Minister Deb Matthews to encourage them to introduce a Bill of their own or at least support legislation from another party that amends the RHPA, should legislation be introduced.
These letters can be seen on Coalition’s Zero Tolerance Rule website (www.zerotolerancerule.com).
It is our hope that the leaders of all parties can strike a working relationship with each other so that this Government may be able to get some legislation passed. Otherwise hopefully there will be a new election and a new government that wants to do something about a spousal exemption for dentists and other health care workers.OH
Dr. Larry and Mrs. Margo Pedlar.
Co chairs of the ‘Coalition of Spouses to Restore Rights and Freedoms’.