Treating Self and Family Members

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    Complete our brief online survey or view the survey report

    Join the ongoing discussion on our discussion page

    The deadline to provide feedback is November 22, 2013

    Quick Poll

    Did you know that physicians should not treat themselves or family members except in certain prescribed situations?

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    Our Process

    Learn more about the College’s consultation process here

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    The College’s Treating Self and Family Members policy is currently being reviewed. This policy sets out the restrictions on physicians diagnosing, treating, and prescribing medications for themselves and their family members. The policy also assists physicians in determining whether it is appropriate to provide treatment to a particular individual.

    View the current policy

    To assist with this review, we are inviting feedback from all stakeholders, including members of the medical profession, the public, health system organizations and other health professionals on the current policy. Comments received during this preliminary consultation will assist the College in updating the policy. When a revised draft is developed, it will be recirculated for further comment before it is considered for final approval by Council.


    We want to hear your thoughts on the current policy…



    The physician-patient relationship is the foundation of the practice of medicine. Whenever physicians treat themselves or someone with whom they have a personal relationship, there is a risk that the physicians’ objectivity and ability to provide quality care will be compromised. This policy sets out the professional and legal restrictions to physicians treating themselves and family members and the limited circumstances in which it is permitted.

    The purpose of the policy review is to evaluate the current policy and determine what revisions may be required to ensure it reflects current practice issues, embodies the values and duties of medical professionalism, and is consistent with the College’s mandate to protect the public.

    Have Your Say

    We would like to hear your thoughts on the current policy, along with suggestions you may have for how the policy could be improved.

    In particular, we are interested to know:

        • Does the policy provide useful guidance?
        • Are there any issues not included in the current policy that should be addressed? If so, what are they?
        • Are there other ways in which the policy could be impoved?

    Please provide your feedback by November 22, 2013

    Next Steps

    The College is committed to ensuring that the Treating Self and Family Members policy represents the expectations of the profession and is consistent with our mandate to protect the public. The feedback obtained during this preliminary consultation will be carefully reviewed and used to evaluate the existing policy. While it may not be possible to ensure that every comment or suggested edit will be incorporated into the revised draft, all comments will be carefully considered.

    Once a revised draft policy has been developed, stakeholders will be invited to review the revised document and provide further comment before it is considered for final approval by Council.

    Final decisions regarding policy revisions are made by College Council.

    To ensure transparency, the College will post all consultation feedback in accordance with our posting guidelines.

    We value your feedback and thank you again for participating in our policy review process.


    View feedback

    View the feedback received to date or survey report

    Send us your feedback by mail:

    College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario
    80 College Street
    Toronto, Ontario

    Attention: Policy Department