Ontario docs are leaving – patients have trouble finding good doctors



Why Crazy Complaints are driving doctors away from Ontario

Much has been made in the media of the fact that Ontario has a shortage of family doctors. Patients have a hard time to find a good doctor. Why is it that so many physicians leave family medicine altogether or why medical students no longer choose to enter family practise or any specialty where they actually have to come into contact with the public?
The answer, for a large part, lies in the fact that for too many “ignorant” or “ungrateful” patients, Ontario’s College of Physicians and Surgeons (CPSO) makes it all too easy to complain about the most minor issues. More often than not, these issues have nothing to do with their medical condition or with the care they were given. They simply feel like complaining. The CPSO encourages this behaviour. The complainants are promised  “anonimity” by the College. Such is not the case for the physician against whom the complaint is made. Even a nonsensical complaint can ruin the physician’s reputation. If there is to be a “Hearing”, the physician has to pay for “costs” of his own hearing, even if the case is dismissed.
Physicians do not have the same right as patients (ordinary citizens) who are “innocent until proven guilty” A doctor is “guilty until proven innocent” and these days the College can suspend a license even before a “trial” has started and before any “guilt” has been proven. The physician’s reputation is tarnished before the case has been heard.  The patient is still “anonymous” and has been assured by the College that this will remain so. The patient has nothing to lose!  It is doubtful patients would feel justified to go to Court with their complaint. After all, in order to get compensation for real harm done to them, they would have to have a proper case. It would not be enough to complain about something trivial as they know very well the Court would throw their case out before it even started and they might have to compensate the doctor for the attack on his professional reputation. Ignorant though these patients may be, they are not so stupid that they will publicly stand behind their claims in a true Court of Law.
Perhaps a fee of, say, $ 5.00 for administrative costs will eliminate these complaints before they are made. More time for the CPSO to spend on important matters, more time for the doc to treat his “good” patients without losing time and money to defend his professional reputation. The U.S. where such nonsensical complaints are not accepted, is fast becoming a desirable place to practise. Ontario’s docs have wised up to the fact that their College will not defend them against these pests. Our best docs are moving south!
Here, as an example of the purely nonsensical, often malicious and downright idiotic complaints made against physicians is the case of a  patient who “did the dirty” on her doc. This case story was confirmed for accuracy with a friendly contact/informant at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. Is it any wonder educated, intelligent docs simply don’t want to deal with patients anymore?! There are just too many bad apples to justify risking careers.
CASE  of Cathy Tinney, a flying tricycle instructor from Peterborough (Ontario)
Cathy Tinney  (aka Cathy Montgomery)   –  Peterborough Ontario 
Aerotrike Aviation  –  www.aerotrikeaviation.net
705-927-1256 cell
Cathy Montgomery

Cathy Montgomery

53 years old
It is alleged that Cathy, an Aerotrike instructor from Peterborough had her eyes checked for a new prescription for her glasses. Her doc used the latest computerized equipment to check her eyes. “Fly-Girl” was delighted with her new prescription and confirmed her vision had improved significantly over her old prescription. Satisfied, she took her prescription and went on her merry way.
What happened next is anybody’s guess. Instead of filling her prescription somewhere  –  after all, she was more than satisfied with it   – she changed her mind. Our Flying Babe decided not to fill her prescripion and instead, made a formal complaint to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario. A complaint you ask  ……..?  Duhhhh !    FlyBabes  decided that this modern contraption masquerading as the latest in eye-testing equipment couldn’t possibly produce an accurate prescription for her glasses. The reason you ask    …….?   The computerized machine the doc was using did most of the work itself, making it unnecessary to ask repetitive questions such as: “is this better or that better?”  The machine did it all, and much faster too.   FlyBaby must have thought it over and decided she felt left out and was made to feel “unimportant” by a machine smarter than she is. According to the CPSO, FlyBaby stated in her complaint that she did not feel confident  filling her prescription (even though she could see better with it) because she felt that without the usual questions, the test did not take long enough and therefore must be inaccurate!
One wonders what FlyBabe hoped to achieve by complaining.   Punishment of the doctor for keeping up with technology and testing her eyes with state-of-the-art equipment   –  many times more expensive than the old-fashioned, non-computerized machines still in use by “old-timers” not willing to invest in the latest equipment to produce a more accurate prescription?   As this story is doing the rounds,  it sends of course a clear message to Ontario docs not to waste money on the best equipment, lest they also find themselves the subject of a similar complaint. Docs can buy old equipment for a few hundred dollars and Flybabe wouldn’t know the difference as long as she feels important by being asked questions.   The doc deserves a thank you instead of a complaint from this dummy.  Thanks from the rest of us patients, Cathy  !!!! …….  Great Job  !!!   ……..   Not !!!
Of course FlyBaby should have gone back to the doc instead of complaining. But what would she say? She refused to  fill a prescription she had been very happy with.  Apart from her own ignorance, she had no complaint.  She was NOT harmed, She did NOT lose money and her vision had improved with the new prescription. Did this immature 50-something yr. old not have the brainzzzzz to see how her complaint lacked all logic?!  Apparently not!
What does she gain from her complaint?
–       ATTENTION  –   something she is clearly lacking.
–       Being made to feel IMPORTANT  –  if only for a short time.
–       Having someone listen to her who pretends to “CARE” and “SYMPATHIZE”.
–       A PAID trip to the big T-Dot with  FOOD ALLOWANCE  +  FREE COFFEE and a MUFFIN  
–       Enough time left for a shopping trip, and the satisfaction of possible “REVENGE“.
         She lost nothing but the time it took to write her letter of  complaint.
         Easy to see how all this might appeal to this highflying small-town gal.
FlyBaby does not realize that nobody at the College cares about her or her prescription. Might simply be a case of going against a doc they don’t like but more than likely it’s a case of “making work”.  FlyBabe is just a pawn. Did the College point out to her that her complaint lacked all logic?  Nahhh!  Her complaint  provides work for the bureaucrats at the College needing to justify their existence. She will not get a better prescription than the one she did not fill, nor will she get any money. Let’s not forget she made the complaint in order to cause as much trouble as possible for the physician involved while counting on remaining anonymous. Had she not counted on anonymity  (oops!), would she have made the complaint? Having suffered no harm, would she be willing to defend her claim in Court where she would not be anonymous and where her complaint would be recognized as totally unfounded, malicious and a waste of the Court’s time? Pretty sure you can guess the answer!
Another thing which patients like Cathy Tinney/Montgomery don’t realize is that they can be – and often are – “blacklisted” . Sometimes it’s done by the physician, but more often than not, it’s done by Office Staff who add the name  to a circulating list of names of patients who are no longer welcome for one reason or another, often because of repeated unreasonable demands and attempts at blackmail in order to receive narcotics or because they behave badly to Staff or in general or are known to have made unfounded complaints. Sometimes these are patients who complain just because they can and are looking for a bit of power. Anything the doc says or does will be reason enough for them to make a formal complaint.  These  frequently updated “blacklists” continue to circulate. They’re a sure “hit” with Office Staff who are happy to weed out such patients in order to keep things running smoothly for the office and for the doc. Her complaint may well cost FlyBaby dearly. Cathy Tinney’s name was flagged on another “blacklist” as well with the notation: “avoid”, though story or reason not provided but it’s clear this lady is a pain-in-the-butt patient staff and docs would prefer not to deal with. Some lists are available for a fee on the Internet, a few are free.   Once on such a list, it’s pretty well impossible to get off  and Staff and physicians throughout the province and beyond will be alerted.
Because this woman’s complaint is so un-intelligent, unfounded, yet clearly made with malicious intent, we decided to post it here. Though these people are a nuisance, the College has to look into each complaint. This allows people like Cathy Tinney to clog up the system in favour of more urgent and serious matters such as male docs doing naughty things to female patients  –  sorry, no sympathy!  –  but apparently the College’s bread and butter. At the bottom of the list – unfortunately –  are tragic cases resulting in deaths which could (and should) have been prevented had the College had its priorities straight instead of wasting time on ridiculous complaints like Flybaby’s.
Cathy Tinney’s less than intelligent reasoning and complaint should alert potential customers they may be risking their lives when going up with this instructor whose judgement isn’t what it ought to be.
It is not known what  –  if anything  –  has come of this woman’s complaint. Not the first time the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons spends time and money on pathetic nonsense instead of concentrating their efforts on serious stuff such as preventing harm or deaths.
…………………………………………..              And you are wondering why you can’t find a good physician?!
His staff informed us the doc is once again practising exclusively in the City.  Apparently cityfolk have a greater appreciation for advanced technology.
Though his staff were happy to speak to us, the doc in question could not be reached for comment.  (Wise man!)
Will keep you posted!
UPDATE:     The case of this flying female tricycle instructor was  dropped when the College abandoned the case and dismissed it as having no merit.  The Committee found no evidence of any wrongdoing and considered the complaint frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of process.
Even the mighty CPSO could not justify taking this woman’s crazy complaint seriously.  Had there been any merit to her complaint, this patient would have consulted one of many personal injury lawyers as seen on t.v.:   “you don’t pay, unless we win”.    Alternatively, if she felt her complaint had any merit at all, she could have gone to Ontario Small Claims Court  for less than $50.00  where she could claim for damages up to $25.000.  No lawyer required.
The Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons is perhaps useful in cases of sexual abuse, where  –  if my info is correct  –  if you win  –   you will receive $10.000 to blow on “private” treatment by a psychologist  (psychiatrists are free !).

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