July 11, 2014
TORONTO, ON – The Ontario Dental Association (ODA) is pleased to announce that the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario (RCDSO) regulation permitting dentists in Ontario to treat their spouses has been approved by Ontario's Cabinet on July 10, 2014. The regulation comes into force immediately. Bill 70, the Regulated Health Professions Amendment Act (Spousal Exception), 2013 received unanimous support in Ontario's Legislature when it passed on October 23, 2013.
The Ontario Dental Association, representing approximately 8,600 dentists, or over 91 percent of registered dentists in Ontario, along with the Royal College of Dental Surgeons of Ontario were instrumental in bringing about this change for regulated health-care professionals and their spouses.
The passage of this regulation means that access to care for spouses of dentists in rural or northern communities may no longer be an issue. Spouses have been granted the ability to choose the dentist of their preference, including their spouse.
Mr. Steve Clark, MPP Leeds-Grenville, introduced Bill 70 as a Private Member's Bill to amend the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991, working collaboratively with the ODA and all three parties of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to ensure support for the passage of his legislation.
"Dentists support zero tolerance as it relates to sexual abuse," stated ODA President Dr. Gerald Smith. "I can imagine that many spouses of dentists across Ontario are smiling today, knowing that their oral health can be looked after by their spouse should they so choose." Dr. Smith further added: "I would be remiss if I didn't take this opportunity to thank MPPs Clark and Gélinas, Hon. Dr. Eric Hoskins, Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, along with Hon. Deb Matthews, MPP London North Centre and former Minister of Health and Long-Term Care, and many of their colleagues for all of their work in championing the legislation and regulation."
"I'm pleased to announce that in Ontario dentists may now how have their spouses as patients," said the Hon. Dr. Eric Hoskins, MPP St. Paul's and Minister of Health and Long-Term Care. "I know this was an important regulatory change asked for by dentists and I'm thankful to the ODA for their advocacy."
"Having the regulation for Bill 70 passed is great news for Colleges of regulated health professions that wish to permit spousal treatment," MPP Clark said. "I'm happy – and I know many dentists in my community will be happy – to see this regulation has been approved."
"The spousal exception act struck the right balance – allowing Colleges that wish to permit spousal treatment to do so, and those that expressly prohibit their members from treating spouses to continue in this manner," Mme France Gélinas, MPP Nickel Belt and Ontario New Democratic Party Critic for Health and Long-Term Care, said. "For Ontario's dentists, this is a big milestone that I'm proud to support."
The ODA promotes the attainment of optimal oral health for the people of Ontario. Ontario dentists and the ODA are active partners with all levels of government in the promotion of the oral and overall health and well-being of all Ontarians.
For more information, please contact the Ontario Dental Association:
Manager, Public Affairs and Communications
Government Relations Manager