Dispensing Opticians Regulations

Link to law: https://www.novascotia.ca/just/regulations/regs/dodisopt.htm

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Dispensing Opticians Regulations
made under Section 6 of the

Dispensing Opticians Act

S.N.S. 2005, c. 39

O.I.C. 2007-435 (August 17, 2007) N.S. Reg. 361/2007

Interpretation

Citation

1     These regulations may be cited as the Dispensing Opticians Regulations.

Definitions

2     In these regulations,

 

                (a)    “Act” means the Dispensing Opticians Act;

 

                (b)    “contact lens examination” means an examination or examinations approvedby the Board that are a prerequisite to qualifying as a certified contact lensfitter;

 

                (c)    “contact lens program” means such program or programs approved by theBoard which are a prerequisite to qualifying as a contact lens fitter;

 

                (d)    “register” means the written record maintained by the Registrar in which mustbe entered the name, registration number, date of entry to membership, addressand the category of membership of every person who qualifies for registrationaccording to the Act and the regulations, and includes the specialty register,student register and speciality [specialty] student optician register when thecontext requires;

 

                (e)    “registration year” means the year that runs between April 1st of one year andMarch 31st of the next year;

 

                (f)    “student” means a student optician or a specialty student optician.

Registration and Licensing

Prescribed registers

3     In addition to the register, the following registers are prescribed to be maintained by theRegistrar as required by subsection 8(2) of the Act:

 

                (a)    specialty register;

 

                (b)    student register;

 

                (c)    specialty student optician register.

Entries on register

4     (1)    An applicant for registration who has never been registered as a dispensing opticianin any jurisdiction must submit all of the following to the Registrar:

 

                (a)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant is a graduate of adispensing optician education program approved by the Board, or has passedan accreditation exam approved by the Board;

 

                (b)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant has passed any registrationexaminations as may be approved by the Board;

 

                (c)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board;

 

                (d)    the registration fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (e)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practiseoptical dispensing.

 

       (2)    An applicant for registration who has been previously registered as a dispensingoptician either in the Province or in another jurisdiction must submit all of thefollowing to the Registrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising opticaldispensing;

 

                (b)    the registration fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant

 

                         (i)     holds a current licence to practice in another jurisdiction, or has passedany applicable examination approved by resolution of the Board,

 

                         (ii)    is a graduate of a dispensing optician education program approved by theBoard, or has passed an accreditation exam approved by the Board,

 

                         (iii)   has passed any registration examinations approved by the Board;

 

                (d)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practiseoptical dispensing.

Specialty register

5     (1)    The Registrar must enter the name of any member who meets all of the followingcriteria on the specialty register:

 

                (a)    they have successfully completed a contact lens program;

 

(b)they have passed the contact lens examination;

 

                (c)    they are certified by the Board as qualified to fit contact lenses.

 

       (2)    A person whose name is entered on the special register under the former Act asqualified to measure, fit, or adjust contact lenses must be entered in the specialtyregister, but must continue under any conditions or limitations attached to theperson’s previous registration.

Student register

6     (1)    Subject to subsection (2), the Registrar must enter all of the following for eachentrant on the student register:

 

                (a)    the name of the student optician;

 

(b)the student optician’s address;

 

(c)the name of the student optician’s sponsor;

 

                (d)    the name of the dispensing optician education program that the studentoptician is enrolled in or has completed.

 

       (2)    Before a student optician’s information is entered on the student register, the studentoptician must obtain a sponsor.

Specialty student optician register

7     (1)    Subject to subsection (2), the Registrar must enter all of the following for eachentrant on the specialty student optician register:

 

                (a)    the specialty student optician’s name;

 

(b)the specialty student optician’s address;

 

(c)the name of the specialty student optician’s sponsor;

 

                (d)    the name of the contact lens program that the student is enrolled in or hascompleted.

 

       (2)    Before a specialty student optician’s information is entered on the specialty studentoptician register, the specialty student optician must obtain a sponsor.

Categories of membership

8     The 2 categories of membership and corresponding licences are as follows:

 

(a)practising;

 

(b)non-practising.

Non-practising licences

9     (1)    To apply for a non-practising licence, a member must submit all of the following tothe Registrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising opticaldispensing;

 

(b)the applicable licence fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    a statement verifying that the applicant will not be practising opticaldispensing in the Province during the registration year applied for.

 

       (2)    A member who holds a non-practising licence is entitled to do all of the following:

 

                (a)    attend and participate in, but not vote at, meetings of the College;

 

                (b)    serve as a member of any committee of the College.

Renewing non-practising licences

10   To renew a non-practising licence, a member must submit all of the following to theRegistrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising opticaldispensing;

 

                (b)    the applicable licence renewal fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    a statement verifying that the applicant will not be practising opticaldispensing in the Province during the registration year applied for.

Practising licences

11   (1)    To apply for a practising licence, a member must submit all of the following to theRegistrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising opticaldispensing;

 

(b)the applicable licence fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant

 

                         (i)     has liability insurance coverage in the amount set by resolution of theBoard,

 

                         (ii)    has passed any applicable examinations approved by the Board, if theyhave not held a practising licence in the 2 years immediately beforeapplying for a practising licence,

 

                         (iii)   has completed any professional development requirements approved bythe Board;

 

                (d)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practiseoptical dispensing.

 

       (2)    A member who holds a practising licence is entitled to all of the following:

 

(a)use the title “dispensing optician”;

 

(b)if elected, hold office on the Board;

 

                (c)    serve as an appointed member on any committee of the College;

 

(d)attend, participate in and vote at meetings of the College.

Practising licences endorsed with contact lens certification

12   (1)    A member whose name is entered on the specialty register may apply for apractising licence endorsed with a contact lens certification if the member meets therequirements in subsection 11(1) for a practising licence and submits the followingadditional information:

 

                (a)    a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising as acertified contact lens fitter;

 

                (b)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practise asa certified contact lens fitter;

 

                (c)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant has passed any applicableexaminations approved by the Board, if they have not held a practising licenceendorsed with a contact lens certification in the 2 years immediately beforeapplying for a practising licence endorsed with a contact lens certification.

 

       (2)    A member who holds a practising licence endorsed with a contact lens certificationis authorized to use any and all instruments required to ensure that a contact lens isadequately fitted and that the best possible visible acuity is achieved.

Continuation of deemed practising licences from former Act

13   (1)    A person who was approved under the former Act to practise optical dispensing isdeemed to hold a practising licence under the Act and these regulations until the endof the registration year immediately following the year these regulations come intoforce.

 

       (2)    A person who was entitled to measure, fit, or adjust contact lenses under the formerAct is deemed to hold a practising licence endorsed with a contact lens certificationunder the Act and these regulations until the end of the registration year immediatelyfollowing the year these regulations come into force.

Renewing practising licences

14   (1)    A practising licence remains in effect until the end of the registration year in which itis issued, unless it is suspended or revoked.

 

       (2)    To renew a practising licence, a member must submit all of the following to theRegistrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form approved by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising opticaldispensing;

 

                (b)    the applicable licence renewal fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant

 

                         (i)     has liability insurance coverage in the amount set by resolution of theBoard,

 

                         (ii)    has completed any professional development requirements approved bythe Board;

 

                (d)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practiseoptical dispensing.

Renewing practising licences endorsed with contact lens certification

15   (1)    A practising licence endorsed with a contact lens certification remains in effect untilthe end of the registration year in which it is issued, unless it is suspended orrevoked.

 

       (2)    To renew a practising licence endorsed with a contact lens certification, a membermust submit all of the following to the Registrar:

 

                (a)    a completed application on the application form designated by the Board,including a statement verifying that the applicant is not currently subject to anydisciplinary finding that would prohibit the applicant from practising as acertified contact lens fitter;

 

                (b)    the applicable licence renewal fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (c)    proof satisfactory to the Registrar that the applicant

 

                         (i)     has liability insurance coverage in the amount set by the Board,

 

                         (ii)    has completed the professional development requirements approved bythe Board;

 

                (d)    any information the Registrar requires to establish that the applicant iscompetent and capable and of such character to safely and ethically practise asa certified contact lens fitter.

Provisional permits for student opticians

16   (1)    The Registrar must issue a provisional permit to a student optician if all of thefollowing conditions are met:

 

                (a)    the student optician has paid the applicable permit fee established under the by-laws;

 

                (b)    the student optician is registered in the student register;

 

                (c)    either

 

                         (i)     the student optician has successfully completed the portion of theirdispensing optician education program required by the Board; or

 

                         (ii)    the student optician graduated from their dispensing optician educationprogram on a date that was within the required period of time set by theBoard before they applied for a provisional permit.

 

       (2)    A provisional permit for a student optician expires on the earliest of the followingdates:

 

                (a)    1 month immediately after the date the student optician passes the registrationexamination for dispensing opticians;

 

                (b)    the date of the student optician’s third failure of the registration examinationfor dispensing opticians;

 

                (c)    the date of the third offering of the registration examination for dispensingopticians in the Province immediately after the eligibility date of the studentoptician to write the examination.

 

       (3)    A student optician is permitted to write the registration examination once theirprovisional permit as a student optician expires only if they meet the requirementsdetermined by the Board.

 

       (4)    A student optician who holds a valid provisional permit as a student optician maypractise optical dispensing only under the direct and constant supervision of theirsponsor.

Provisional permits for specialty students opticians

17   (1)    The Registrar must issue a contact lens provisional permit to a specialty studentoptician if all of the following conditions are met:

 

                (a)    the specialty student optician has paid the applicable permit fee establishedunder the by-laws;

 

                (b)    the specialty student optician is registered in the specialty student opticianregister;

 

                (c)    either

 

                         (i)     the specialty student optician has successfully completed the portion oftheir contact lens program required by the Board, or

 

                         (ii)    the specialty student optician graduated from their contact lens programon a date that was within the required period of time set by the Boardbefore they applied for a provisional permit.

 

       (2)    A contact lens provisional permit expires upon the earliest of the following dates:

 

                (a)    1 month immediately after the date the specialty student optician passes thecontact lens examination;

 

                (b)    the date of the specialty student optician’s third failure of the contact lensexamination;

 

                (c)    the date of the third offering of the contact lens examination in the Provinceimmediately after the eligibility date of the specialty student optician to writethe examination.

 

       (3)    A specialty student optician is permitted to write the contact lens examination oncetheir contact lens provisional permit expires only if they meet the requirementsdetermined by the Board.

 

       (4)    A specialty student optician who holds a valid contact lens provisional permit mayfit, measure, or adjust contact lenses only under the direct and constant supervisionof their sponsor.

Sponsors

18   (1)    A sponsor may sponsor a maximum of 2 students at a time, which, subject to thedefinition of sponsor in the Act, may include 2 student opticians, 2 specialty studentopticians or 1 student optician and 1 specialty student optician.

 

       (2)    A sponsor must provide direct and constant supervision of their student opticians orspecialty student opticians while the students are engaging in the practice of opticaldispensing.

 

       (3)    Only fittings performed or hours worked under the supervision of a sponsor qualifyas fittings or hours required to complete the course of study required in Section 19.

 

       (4)    A sponsor is responsible for immediately notifying the Registrar when they stopsponsoring a student optician, but the sponsor remains responsible for the studentoptician until the notification is received in writing by the Registrar.

 

       (5)    A student optician who changes their sponsor must immediately notify the Registrarin writing of the change.

Course of study for student opticians and specialty student opticians

19   (1)    Before taking the exam for registration as a dispensing optician, a student opticianmust complete all of the following under the supervision of a sponsor within 3 yearsfrom the date they pass the mid-term examination of their dispensing opticianeducation program:

 

                (a)    250 fittings, at least 100 of which are multi-focal vision fittings;

 

                (b)    2000 hours of practising optical dispensing.

 

       (2)    Before taking the contact lens examination, a specialty student optician mustcomplete all of the following under the supervision of a sponsor in 3 years:

 

                (a)    35 fittings for soft lenses;

 

                (b)    15 fittings for rigid lenses.

Information on member’s registration and licensing status

20   Any dispensing optician or any member of the public may request verification of theregistration or licensing status of a member from the Registrar.

Removal of name from registers

21   (1)    The Registrar must remove the name of a member or a student from the appropriateregister if any of the following occurs:

 

                (a)    the member or student requests it and surrenders all their licences and permits;

 

                (b)    the Registrar is notified of the death of the member or student;

 

                (c)    the registration of the member or student is revoked.

 

       (2)    The Registrar may suspend the licence of a member or the provisional permit of astudent if the member or the student fails to pay fees required by the Act or theseregulations or if the member or the student is otherwise suspended under the Act.

       (3)    The Registrar may restore the name of a person removed from a register to theregister, and may issue an appropriate licence if the person

 

                (a)    pays the applicable fee established under the by-laws; and

 

                (b)    complies with the Act, these regulations and the by-laws.

Professional Conduct

Code of ethics

22   After consulting with the members, the Board must adopt a code of ethics and standards ofpractice for members.

Preliminary investigation of complaint

23   (1)    On receiving a complaint, the Registrar must forward copies of the complaint to bothof the following:

 

(a)the respondent;

 

(b)an investigator.

 

       (2)    On receiving a complaint, an investigator must conduct an investigation, includingdoing any of the following:

 

                (a)    requesting additional written or oral explanations from the complainant, therespondent or a third party;

 

                (b)    requesting an interview of the complainant, the respondent or a third party;

 

                (c)    informally resolving the complaint in the interests of the respondent, thecomplainant, the public and the College.

 

       (3)    An investigator may investigate any matter that may constitute any of the followingrelating to the respondent that arises in the course of the investigation:

 

                (a)    professional misconduct;

 

                (b)    conduct unbecoming the profession;

 

                (c)    incompetence;

 

                (d)    incapacity.

 

       (4)    A respondent may submit medical information and any information relevant to thecomplaint to an investigator.

Powers of Complaints Committee and disposition of Complaints Committee

24   (1)    On receiving a report from an investigator, a Complaints Committee must do one ofthe following:

 

                (a)    accept any informal resolution made by the investigator under clause 23(2)(c)and take no further action;

 

                (b)    dismiss the complaint, if a determination is made by the ComplaintsCommittee that the College does not have jurisdiction to resolve the complaintor the complaint cannot be substantiated or is frivolous or vexatious, andprovide guidance to the complainant, the respondent or any person associatedwith the complaint, if the Complaints Committee considers guidance to beuseful;

 

                (c)    give the complainant, the respondent and any other person it considersappropriate the opportunity to appear before the Complaints Committee and tosubmit representations or explanations or documentation, including medicaland any other information relevant to the complaint, in accordance with clause28(c) of the Act.

 

       (2)    After the Complaints Committee has given the parties an opportunity to appearbefore the committee under clause (1)(c), the committee may require the respondentto do one or more of the following:

 

                (a)    submit to physical or mental examinations by a qualified person or personsdesignated by the Complaints Committee and authorize the examinationreports to be given to the Complaints Committee;

 

                (b)    submit to a review of the respondent’s practice by a qualified person orpersons designated by the Complaints Committee and authorize a copy of thereview to be given to the Complaints Committee;

 

                (c)    submit to any examination the Complaints Committee directs, to determinewhether the respondent is competent to practise optical dispensing, andauthorize the examination report to be given to the Complaints Committee;

 

                (d)    produce any records kept about the respondent’s practice that the ComplaintsCommittee considers appropriate.

 

       (3)    If a respondent fails to comply with subsection (2), the Complaints Committee maysuspend the licence to practice or restrict the licence of a respondent, or both, untilthe suspension is lifted, superseded, or annulled by the Complaints Committee orProfessional Conduct Committee, as the case may be.

 

       (3)    If a respondent fails to comply with subsection (2), the Complaints Committee maysuspend the respondent’s licence to practice or restrict the respondent’s licence topractice, or both, until the suspension or restriction is lifted, superseded or annulledby the Complaints Committee or Professional Conduct Committee, as the case maybe.

 

       (4)    After the Complaints Committee has given the parties an opportunity to appearbefore the committee under clause (1)(c), the committee must do one of thefollowing:

 

(a)dismiss the complaint;

 

(b)counsel the respondent;

 

(c)caution the respondent;

 

(d)counsel and caution the respondent;

 

                (e)    with the consent of the respondent and notwithstanding that the complaint hasnot been forwarded to the Professional Conduct Committee, order that therespondent receive a reprimand and that the reprimand be communicated to therespondent and the complainant, and such other persons as the ComplaintsCommittee considers appropriate;

 

                (f)    refer a matter or matters to the Professional Conduct Committee if adetermination is made that the matter or matters warrant a hearing;

 

(g)informally resolve the complaint.

 

       (5)    A counsel or a caution issued under clause (4)(b), (c) or (d) is not a disciplinaryfinding against the respondent and must not be published or disclosed to the public,except that it must be disclosed to all of the following:

 

                (a)    the respondent;

 

                (b)    the complainant;

 

                (c)    any person the Complaints Committee considers appropriate;

 

                (d)    the Complaints Committee in any subsequent complaints filed against therespondent.

 

       (6)    A reprimand issued under clause (4)(e) is a disciplinary finding against therespondent and subsection 30(2) of the Act requiring publication and notificationapplies.

Costs of respondent complying with requirement

25   The costs for a respondent to comply with a requirement under subsection 24(2) mustinitially be paid by the Complaints Committee, but may be awarded as costs against therespondent under Section 40.

Suspended respondent may request hearing

26   On receiving a request for a hearing from a respondent who has been suspended by aComplaints Committee, the Complaints Committee must refer the complaint about therespondent directly to a Professional Conduct Committee for a hearing.

Settlement proposals

27   (1)    A settlement proposal proposed by a respondent must be consented to by theCollege, submitted to the Complaints Committee in writing and must include all ofthe following:

 

                (a)    an admission or admissions to 1 or more of the allegations set out in the noticeof hearing;

 

                (b)    the respondent’s consent to a specified disposition, conditional upon theacceptance of the settlement proposal by the Professional Conduct Committee.

 

       (2)    A settlement proposal may include any disposition that could be ordered by aProfessional Conduct Committee under Section 38.

 

       (3)    The Complaints Committee retains jurisdiction over a complaint until a hearingbefore the Professional Conduct Committee begins, or the settlement proposal isaccepted by the Professional Conduct Committee.

 

       (4)    The parties may agree to use the services of a mediator to prepare a settlementproposal, and the costs of the mediator must be divided equally between the Collegeand the respondent, unless the parties agree to a different division of the costs.

 

       (5)    The Complaints Committee may recommend acceptance of a settlement proposal ifit is satisfied that all of the following are met:

 

(a)the public is protected;

 

                (b)    the conduct or its causes can be, or are, successfully remedied or treated, andthe respondent is likely to successfully pursue any remediation or treatmentrequired;

 

                (c)    settlement is in the best interests of the public and the dispensing opticianprofession.

 

       (6)    If a Complaints Committee does not recommend accepting a settlement proposal,the complaint considered by the Complaints Committee must be referred to theProfessional Conduct Committee for hearing.

 

       (7)    If a Complaints Committee recommends accepting a settlement proposal, thesettlement proposal must be referred to the Professional Conduct Committee.

Professional Conduct Committee actions when settlement proposal referred

28   (1)    On receiving a settlement proposal that the Complaints Committee recommends beaccepted, the Professional Conduct Committee must do one of the following:

 

                (a)    accept the settlement proposal, in which case the settlement proposal formspart of the Professional Conduct Committee’s order disposing of the matterand, other than a hearing for a breach of the settlement proposal undersubsection (5), a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committee is notheld;

 

                (b)    reject the settlement proposal, in which case the complaint considered by theComplaints Committee must be referred to a panel of the ProfessionalConduct Committee, made up of persons who did not sit on the panel thatreviewed the settlement proposal, for a hearing;

 

                (c)    amend the settlement proposal and return it to the Complaints Committee forreview.

 

       (2)    If the Complaints Committee does not agree with amendments made under clause(1)(c), the settlement proposal is deemed to be rejected and the complaint consideredby the Complaints Committee must be forwarded to a panel of the ProfessionalConduct Committee, made up of persons who did not sit on the panel that reviewedthe settlement proposal, for a hearing.

 

       (3)    If the Complaints Committee agrees with amendments made under clause (1)(c), thesettlement proposal is returned to the Professional Conduct Committee for approval.

 

       (4)    If a settlement proposal is rejected by a Professional Conduct Committee, thehearing must proceed without reference to the settlement proposal or any admissionscontained in the settlement proposal.

 

       (5)    A breach by a respondent of an undertaking given in an accepted settlementproposal or a condition of an accepted settlement proposal constitutes professionalmisconduct and may form the subject of a hearing before a panel of the ProfessionalConduct Committee, made up of persons who did not sit on the panel that reviewedthe settlement proposal.

Notice of hearing

29   (1)    The Professional Conduct Committee that prepares a notice of hearing undersubsection 32(2) of the Act must serve a copy of the notice either personally or byregistered mail on each of the following:

 

                (a)    the respondent, at the respondent’s last known address;

 

                (b)    the complainant, at the complainant’s last known address.

 

       (2)    A notice of hearing must state all of the following:

 

                (a)    the nature of the conduct to be inquired into;

 

                (b)    the details of the charges;

 

                (c)    the date, time and place of the hearing;

 

                (d)    that the respondent may be represented at the hearing by counsel.

Amendment of notice of hearing

30   (1)    At any time before or during a hearing, the Professional Conduct Committee mayamend or alter any notice of hearing for any of the following reasons:

 

                (a)    to correct an alleged defect in substance or form,

 

                (b)    to make the notice conform to the evidence if there appears to be a differencebetween the evidence and the notice or if the evidence discloses potential forany of the following that is not stated in the notice:

 

                         (i)     professional misconduct,

 

                         (ii)    conduct unbecoming a dispensing optician,

 

                         (iii)   incapacity,

 

                         (iv)   incompetence.

 

       (2)    A respondent must be given opportunity to prepare an answer to any amendment oralteration to a notice of hearing made by the Professional Conduct Committee.

 

       (3)    A Professional Conduct Committee may decide that an amendment or alteration tothe notice of hearing should not be made after receiving the respondent’s answerunder subsection (2), and if it considers it appropriate, may refer any new allegationsto an investigator under Section 23.

Attendance at a hearing

31   (1)    Except as provided in subsections (2) and (3), a hearing is open to the public.

 

       (2)    At the request of a party, the Professional Conduct Committee may order that thepublic, in whole or in part, be excluded from a hearing or any part of it if theProfessional Conduct Committee is satisfied that any of the following apply:

 

                (a)    personal, medical, financial or other matters that may be disclosed at thehearing are of such a nature that avoiding public disclosure of those matters inthe interest of the public or any person affected outweighs adhering to theprincipal [principle] that hearings should be open to the public;

 

                (b)    the safety of any person may be jeopardized by permitting public attendance.

 

       (3)    The Professional Conduct Committee may order that the public be excluded from apart of a hearing that deals with a request for an order to exclude the public in wholeor in part under subsection (2).

 

       (4)    The Professional Conduct Committee may make any order it considers necessary,including prohibiting the publication or broadcasting of matters, to prevent the publicdisclosure of matters disclosed in a hearing or any part of a hearing dealing with anorder under subsection (2) or (3).

 

       (5)    Subject to any order made under this Section, the Professional Conduct Committeemust state at a hearing its reasons for any order made under this Section.

Hearing procedures

32   (1)    Subject to the Act and these regulations, the Professional Conduct Committee maydetermine its own rules of procedure.

 

(2)A complainant cannot participate as a party at a hearing.

 

       (3)    Witnesses at a hearing must testify under oath or affirmation.

 

       (4)    An oath or affirmation taken at a hearing may be administered by any member of theProfessional Conduct Committee or other person in attendance who is authorized bylaw to administer oaths or affirmations.

 

       (5)    The Professional Conduct Committee may require the respondent to do one or moreof the following during a hearing:

 

                (a)    submit to physical or mental examinations by a qualified person or personsdesignated by the Professional Conduct Committee and authorize theexamination reports to be given to the Professional Conduct Committee;

 

                (b)    submit to a review of the respondent’s practice by a qualified person or personsdesignated by the Professional Conduct Committee and authorize a copy of thereview to be given to the Professional Conduct Committee;

 

                (c)    submit to any examination the Professional Conduct Committee directs, todetermine whether the respondent is competent to practise optical dispensing,and authorize the examination report to be given to the Professional ConductCommittee;

 

                (d)    produce any records kept about the respondent’s practice that the ProfessionalConduct Committee considers appropriate.

 

       (6)    If a respondent fails to comply with a requirement under subsection (3) theProfessional Conduct Committee may direct the Registrar to suspend the registrationand any licences or permits of the respondent until the respondent complies.

Costs of complying with requirement

33   The costs for a respondent to comply with a requirement under subsection 32(5) mustinitially be paid by the Professional Conduct Committee, but may be awarded as costsagainst the respondent under Section 40.

Respondent fails to attend hearing

34   After receiving proof of service of the notice of hearing, a Professional ConductCommittee may proceed with a hearing in a respondent’s absence and take any actionauthorized under the Act without further notice to the respondent.

Subpoenaed witness fees

35   Witnesses who are present under subpoena at a hearing before the Professional ConductCommittee are entitled to the same allowances as witnesses attending a trial or an action inthe Supreme Court of Nova Scotia.

Recording of evidence at hearing

36   (1)    Any evidence presented at a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committeemust be recorded by a person authorized by the College.

 

       (2)    Evidence may be presented at a hearing before the Professional Conduct Committeein any manner that the committee considers appropriate, and the committee is notbound by the rules of law respecting presenting evidence that apply to judicialproceedings.

Preserving evidence

37   Evidence obtained by a Professional Conduct Committee, and information obtained by aComplaints Committee or an investigator for a complaint that has not been dismissed bythe Complaints Committee, must be preserved for at least 5 years from the date of theevidence is presented or the information is obtained.

Disposition by Professional Conduct Committee

38   A Professional Conduct Committee that finds professional misconduct, conductunbecoming a dispensing optician, incompetence or incapacity on the part of a respondentmay include any of the following in the order of the committee disposing of the matter:

 

                (a)    revoking the respondent’s registration and directing that the respondent’s namebe removed from any register it is entered in;

 

                (b)    suspending the respondent’s licence to practise optical dispensing for a specificperiod;

 

                (c)    suspending the respondent’s license to practise optical dispensing pending thesatisfaction and completion of any conditions the Professional ConductCommittee orders;

 

                (d)    imposing any restrictions or conditions on the respondent’s practice of opticaldispensing for any period [and] direct[ing] that the restrictions and conditionsbe recorded on their licence;

 

                (e)    fining the respondent to a maximum amount of $5000;

 

                (f)    reprimanding the respondent and, if the Professional Conduct Committeeconsiders it appropriate, directing that the reprimand be recorded;

 

                (g)    directing that the respondent pass a particular course of study or satisfy theProfessional Conduct Committee, or any other committee established under theAct, of the respondent’s general competence to practice optical dispensing orcompetence in a specific field of practice;

 

                (h)    directing that the respondent obtain medical treatment;

 

                (i)     directing that the respondent obtain any counselling that the ProfessionalConduct Committee considers appropriate;

 

                (j)     publishing its findings in any manner that the Professional Conduct Committeeconsiders appropriate;

 

                (k)    informing any person of its findings that the Professional Conduct Committeeconsiders appropriate.

Written decision of Professional Conduct Committee

39   (1)    A Professional Conduct Committee must prepare a written record of its decision in ahearing and the reasons for the decision.

 

       (2)    Within a reasonable time frame after the decision, a copy of the ProfessionalConduct Committee’s record of decision must be sent to all of the following byregistered mail or personal service:

 

                (a)    the respondent;

 

                (b)    the complainant;

 

                (c)    any person the Professional Conduct Committee considers appropriate.

Costs

40   (1)    In this Section, “costs” include all of the following:

 

                (a)    expenses incurred by the College in the investigation of a complaint;

 

                (b)    expenses incurred by the College for the activities of the ComplaintsCommittee and the Professional Conduct Committee;

 

                (c)    the College’s solicitor and client costs, including disbursements and HST,relating to the investigation and hearing or to the resolution of the complaint,including those of any College counsel and counsel for the ProfessionalConduct Committee;

 

                (d)    fees for retaining a court reporter and preparing transcripts of the proceeding;and

 

                (e)    travel costs and reasonable expenses of any witnesses, including expertwitnesses, who are required to appear at the hearing or who are required for theresolution of the matter.

 

       (2)    Except when awarded costs under this Section, a respondent is responsible for allexpenses incurred in their defence.

 

       (3)    If the Professional Conduct Committee finds professional misconduct, conductunbecoming, incompetence or incapacity on the part of a respondent, it may orderthe respondent to pay costs in whole or in part and the costs are a debt to berecovered by civil action for debts.

 

       (4)    If the Professional Conduct Committee considers that a hearing was not necessary, itmay order the College to pay some or all of the respondent’s legal costs and the costsare a debt to be recovered by civil action for debts.

 

       (5)    The Registrar may suspend the licence of a respondent who fails to pay costs withinthe time ordered until payment is made or satisfactory arrangements for payment aremade.