Sexual Abuse and Sexual Misconduct Complaints

As regulated healthcare professionals, medical laboratory technologists (MLTs) are responsible for always maintaining professional boundaries with their patients. The Health Professions Act (HPA) strictly prohibits healthcare professionals from engaging in any form of sexual abuse or sexual misconduct with a patient.

The HPA defines sexual abuse and sexual misconduct and establishes clear rules for the Colleges responsible for regulating healthcare professionals to follow upon receiving a complaint from a patient alleging sexual abuse or sexual misconduct by a regulated healthcare professional.

Who is a patient?

Each regulatory college defines who constitutes a patient in their Standards of Practice. An individual is a patient of an MLT if any of the following circumstances exist:

  • The MLT has provided a health service to the individual on an ongoing or episodic basis.
  • The MLT has provided a health service regardless of whether the MLT charged or received payment from the individual or a third party on behalf of the individual.
  • The MLT has knowingly contributed to a written or electronic health record or file for the individual.
  • The individual has consented to the health service to be performed by the MLT.
  • The MLT has collected and analyzed biological samples, performed quality control procedures, and communicated results that have been critically evaluated to ensure accuracy and reliability.

An individual who is currently engaged in a sexual relationship with an MLT is not a patient if all the following circumstances exist:

  • There is, at the time the MLT provides the health service, an ongoing sexual relationship between the MLT and the individual, including but not limited to, spouse or adult interdependent partner.
  • The MLT provides the health service to the individual in an emergency circumstance or in circumstances where the health service is minor in nature.
  • The MLT has taken reasonable steps to transfer the care of the individual to another MLT or appropriate healthcare provider or there is no reasonable opportunity to transfer care to another MLT or appropriate healthcare provider.

Complaints of a Sexual Nature

Complaints of a sexual nature may involve:

  • Privacy and respect: this could include a lack of regard for personal privacy while providing the healthcare service.
  • Inappropriate comments or gestures: this could include making sexually suggestive remarks, commenting unnecessarily on a sexual relationship or sexual orientation, making sexually insulting or offensive comments or jokes.
  • Sexual contact or assault: this encompasses everything from inappropriate touching to sexual assault, including contact that would otherwise be considered consensual.

If you believe your regulated healthcare professional may have crossed a sexual boundary, we urge you to contact the appropriate regulatory College.

If the health professional is an MLT, please contact the CMLTA Patient Relations Officer, Gwen Harris, at gharris@cmlta.org to discuss your concerns.

We're available to answer your questions

Contact CMLTA

The College of Medical Laboratory Technologists of Alberta (CMLTA) is the regulatory body for Medical Laboratory Technologists (MLTs) employed in Alberta.

Treaty 6

We wish to acknowledge that the land on which the CMLTA office is located is Treaty 6 territory and a traditional meeting ground for many Indigenous people. This is home to the Cree, Blackfoot, and Metis, as it is for the Nakoda, Tsuu T’ina, Chipewyan, and other Indigenous people. Their spiritual and practical relationships to the land create a rich heritage for our life as a community.

Contact Information

301-9426 51 Avenue NW,
Edmonton, Alberta
T6E 5A6

Phone: 780-435-5452
Toll Free: 1-800-265-9351
Fax: 780-437-1442

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