How Does Accountability Work from a Regulatory Perspective?
Many of the health profession colleges articulate the standards of care expected in the circumstances of delegation. It is up to each health care professional to ensure that he or she meets the expectations of his or her profession.
In the broadest terms, authorizers are responsible for ensuring that the procedure he or she is authorizing will be performed competently, that is safely, effectively and ethically. If an authorizer is competent to make this determination and authorization is in the best interests of the patient and there is reason to believe it will be performed competently then it is appropriate to authorize performance of the procedure.
An implementer or co-implementers must be reasonably satisfied that authorization has been made appropriately, that the procedure is warranted and that he or she is competent to perform the procedure and manage the outcomes given the circumstances in the situation.
Regulated health professional authorizers and implementers are each accountable for their decisions and actions when they are practicing independently and as members of a team.
Employers are responsible for providing care in accordance with applicable legislation and corporate expectations. Employers who are regulated health professionals are additionally responsible for upholding any relevant standards of practice for the profession.
This guide is a consensus document developed by the Federation of Health Regulatory Colleges of Ontario. The Federation comprises the 26 health regulatory colleges that regulate health professionals in Ontario. Other stakeholders involved in the development of the guide included the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and the Ontario Hospital Association. For questions, contact the relevant college.