Discipline Decisions


Manish Patel (OCP #605365)

After a hearing held on December 9 and 10, 2015, and January 12, 13, and 19, 2016, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Patel in a decision dated December 19, 2016, with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

That he prepared false documents and/or submitted false claims to the Ontario Drug Benefit Plan and/or ESI for the patient, C.S., regarding the following transactions:

(a) Novamax glucometer on or about May 19, 2011;

(b) Meds Check on or about June 7, 2011;

(c) 100 Nova Max test strips on or about December 5, 2011;

(d) Novamax glucometer on or about May 19, 2012; and/or

(e) Meds Check on or about June 7, 2012.

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession;
  • Falsified a record relating to his practice;
  • Signed or issued, in his professional capacity, a document that he knew contained a false or misleading statement;
  • Submitted an account or charge for services that he knew was false or misleading;
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional.

Following a further hearing day held on January 12, 2018, the Panel made further findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Patel with respect to the following incidents:

  • That he submitted false claims for MedsCheck services not actually provided;
  • That he submitted claims for MedsCheck services in relation to the patients who did not meet the eligibility criteria for MedsCheck services;
  • That he failed to document and/or retain records regarding MedsCheck services as required by the MedsCheck program and pharmacy regulations;
  • That he falsified the signatures of patients on MedsCheck review forms; and/or
  • That he falsified records for MedsCheck services.

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession;
  • Failed to keep records as required respecting his patients;
  • Falsified a record relating to his practice;
  • Signed or issued, in his professional capacity, a document that he knew contained a false or misleading statement;
  • Submitted an account or charge for services that he knew was false or misleading;
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional.

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. Directing the Registrar to impose specified terms, conditions or limitations on the Member’s certificate of registration requiring:

a. that the Member shall complete successfully, at his own expense:

i. the ProBE Program on Professional/Problem Based Ethics for Healthcare Professionals, with an unconditional pass, within twelve (12) months of the date of this Order, and

ii. the ProBE Plus Program, within twenty-four (24) months of the date of this Order;

b. that the Member shall be prohibited from acting as the Designated Manager at any pharmacy for a period of three (3) years from February 11, 2018;

c. that the Member shall appoint a Designated Manager approved by the Manager, Investigations & Resolutions for any pharmacy in which he has a proprietary interest for a period of three (3) years from February 11, 2018;

d. that the Member’s practice, and the operation of any pharmacy in which he has a proprietary interest, will be monitored by the College for a period of three (3) years from the date of this Order, on the following terms:

i. the monitoring will be by means of inspections conducted by a representative of the College at such times as the College may determine;

ii. the monitoring inspections may be in addition to any routine inspections conducted by the College pursuant to the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act, s. 148;

iii. the Member shall cooperate fully during such inspections;

iv. the Member shall pay to the College in respect of such monitoring inspections the amount of $1,000.00 per inspection, after each inspection, with the total number of inspections for which the Member must pay not to exceed a total of four (4); and

v. the College may choose to conduct additional inspections within the monitoring period at no further cost to the Member.

e. the Registrar is empowered, in her discretion, to grant a request for an extension of time to complete the remedial steps set out in paragraph 2(a), if the Registrar is of the view that it would be in the interests of fairness to do so and that it would not be contrary to the College’s mandate to serve and protect the public interest.

3. Directing the Registrar to suspend the Member’s Certificate of Registration for a period of 12 months, with 3 months of the suspension to be remitted on condition the Member complete the remedial training program as specified in paragraph 2(a) above. The suspension shall commence on February 11, 2018 and continue without interruption until November 10, 2018. If the remitted portion of the suspension has to be served because the Member fails to complete the ProBE Program as specified in subparagraph 2(a)(i) above, the further suspension shall commence on January 13, 2019 and continue without interruption until April 12, 2019. If the remitted portion of the suspension has to be served because the Member fails to complete the ProBE Plus Program as specified in subparagraph 2(a)(ii) above, the further suspension shall commence on January 13, 2020 and continue without interruption until April 12, 2020. If the time for completing the remedial steps in paragraph 2(a)(i) or (ii) above is extended by the Registrar, the date on which the remitted portion of the suspension shall commence, if required, shall be adjusted accordingly.

4. Requiring the Member to pay costs to the College in the amount of $45,000.00 in accordance with the following schedule for payment:

a. $5,000.00 by cheque post-dated to March 16, 2018, to be provided on the date of the hearing;

b. $10,000.00 by certified cheque or bank draft no later than January 10, 2019;

c. $10,000.00 by certified cheque or bank draft no later than February 10, 2019;

d. $10,000.00 by certified cheque or bank draft no later than March 10, 2019; and

e. $10,000.00 by certified cheque or bank draft no later than April 10, 2019.

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that the Member has stolen from the people of Ontario, betrayed the profession, and undercut the public’s confidence in the profession.

The Panel observed that as a pharmacist, the Member provides care to the public and, in return, he is held in high regard for the role played in the provision of healthcare in Ontario. The Panel indicated that it was extremely disappointed in the Member.

The Panel related that the Member’s actions exemplify disgraceful, dishonourable, and unprofessional conduct, and that his misconduct has had a detrimental impact on pharmacists’ professional relationships with the public they serve.

The Panel expressed its expectation that the Member now understands the seriousness and magnitude of his misconduct, and that he will not be before a panel of the Discipline Committee again.

Finally, the Panel observed that the Member has brought shame upon himself and his family.


Joseph Hanna (OCP #209868)

At a hearing on January 15, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Hanna with respect to the following:

READ MORE

  • The conduct of soliciting financial support through Advertising Services from [Organization], in or about the period from April 1, 2013 to December 31, 2015, as described in the Agreed Statement of Facts presented in the hearing, when tied or linked to the purchase of listed or interchangeable products in Ontario, which could be regarded as constituting a rebate subsection 12.1(3) of the Drug Interchangeability and Dispensing Fee Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. P23, and/or s. 11.5(3) of the Ontario Drug Benefit Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.10

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand;

2. That the Registrar is directed to impose the following terms, conditions and limitations on the Member’s Certificate of Registration:

a. that the Member pass, within 12 months of the date of this Order and at his own expense, the Ontario College of Pharmacists’ Jurisprudence Exam;

3. That a fine in the amount of $20,000 shall be paid to the Minister of Finance within 90 days of the date of this Order;

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $30,000.

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that the Member is part of the honorable profession of Pharmacy. The Panel observed that pharmacy is a self-regulated profession and the Member bears the responsibility of following the standards of practice and the relevant laws and regulations.

The Panel noted that, as a Member holding an executive position, business interests should always be conducted with integrity, honesty, and transparency. The Panel reminded the Member that he is a member of this profession first, and businessmen second.

The Panel indicated that the practice of pharmacy is a privilege that carries with it significant obligations to the public, the profession and to oneself. Through his conduct, the Member failed in his obligations by engaging in unprofessional conduct with respect to requesting and accepting rebates.


Lawrence Varga (OCP # 608565)

At a hearing on January 15, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Varga with respect to the following:

READ MORE

  • The conduct of soliciting financial support through Advertising Services from [Organization], in or about the period from April 1, 2013 to December 31, 2015, as described in the Agreed Statement of Facts presented in the hearing, when tied or linked to the purchase of listed or interchangeable products in Ontario, which could be regarded as constituting a rebate subsection 12.1(3) of the Drug Interchangeability and Dispensing Fee Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. P23, and/or s. 11.5(3) of the Ontario Drug Benefit Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.10

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand;

2. That the Registrar is directed to impose the following terms, conditions and limitations on the Member’s Certificate of Registration:

a. that the Member pass, within 12 months of the date of this Order and at his own expense, the Ontario College of Pharmacists’ Jurisprudence Exam;

3. That a fine in the amount of $20,000 shall be paid to the Minister of Finance within 90 days of the date of this Order;

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $30,000.

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that the Member is part of the honorable profession of Pharmacy. The Panel observed that pharmacy is a self-regulated profession and the Member bears the responsibility of following the standards of practice and the relevant laws and regulations.

The Panel noted that, as a Member holding an executive position, business interests should always be conducted with integrity, honesty, and transparency. The Panel reminded the Member that he is a member of this profession first, and businessmen second.

The Panel indicated that the practice of pharmacy is a privilege that carries with it significant obligations to the public, the profession and to oneself. Through his conduct, the Member failed in his obligations by engaging in unprofessional conduct with respect to requesting and accepting rebates.


Susan Janssens (OCP #94811)

At a hearing on January 24, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Ms. Janssens with respect to:

READ MORE

  • submitting claims and/or dispensing medications not required for certain identified patients, and submitting claims and/or dispensing medications at shorter intervals than prescribed for certain identified patients

In particular, the Panel found that she

  • failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession
  • engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members as unprofessional

Ms. Janssens agreed to permanently resign as a member of the College while this discipline proceeding was pending.

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand
2. Costs to the College in the amount of $4,000.00

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that members of the public hold pharmacists in high regard, and that as a pharmacist, Ms. Janssens failed in her professional obligation to conduct herself in a manner that is respectable, responsible, and maintains public confidence.

The Panel observed that pharmacy is a self-regulated profession; members have a responsibility to ensure that the public is adequately protected and to maintain the public’s confidence in their ability to govern themselves.

The Panel pointed out that Ms. Janssens was expected to uphold the standards of practice of pharmacy, especially as a designated manager, which comes with additional responsibilities. As a designated manager, adequate supervision of the pharmacy is important to ensure that the pharmacy adheres to all applicable laws and regulations.

The results of Ms. Janssen’s misconduct is that she has let down the public, the pharmacy profession and herself. The Panel expressed its confidence that her decision to permanently resign will ensure the public is protected.


Mukesh Khunt (OCP #614354)

At a hearing on March 1, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Khunt with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

  • He was found guilty, on March 7, 2014 by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan in relation to the following counts:
    • Count 1: Health Care Fraud Conspiracy (18 U.S.C. § 1349 and 1347)
    • Count 7: Health Care Fraud, Aiding and Abetting (18 U.S.C. § 1347 and 2)
    • Count 8: Health Care Fraud, Aiding and Abetting (18 U.S.C. § 1347 and 2)
    • Count 11: Conspiracy to Distribute Controlled Substances (21 U.S.C. § 846 and 841(b)(1)(C)
    • Count 17: Distribution of Controlled Substances, Aiding and Abetting (21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(D) and 2
    • Count 18: Distribution of Controlled Substances, Aiding and Abetting (21 U.S.C. § 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(D) and 2
  • He knowingly participated in a fraudulent scheme in connection with his work as a pharmacist in the organization run by [Name] from approximately August 2010 to August 2011

In particular, the Panel found that he:

  • Was found guilty of an offence that is relevant to his suitability to practise
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. That the Registrar is directed to impose specified terms, conditions or limitations on the Member’s Certificate of Registration, and in particular:

a. That the Member shall complete successfully, at his own expense:

i. The ProBE Program on Professional/Problem Based Ethics for healthcare professionals, with an unconditional pass, within twelve (12) months of the date of this Order; and

ii. The ProBE Plus Program, within twenty-six (26) months of the date of this Order

b. that the Member shall be prohibited, for a period of 3 years to commence on March 1, 2018, from:

i. Having any proprietary interest in a pharmacy of any kind;

ii. Acting as a Designated Manager in any pharmacy;

iii. Receiving any remuneration for his work as a pharmacist other than remuneration based only on hourly or weekly rates, and not on the basis of any incentive or bonus for prescription sales. For clarity, this does not prohibit the Member from receiving compensation for travel or accommodation when working as a relief pharmacist.

3. That the Registrar suspend the Member’s Certificate of Registration for a period of three months, with one month of the suspension to be remitted on condition that the Member complete the remedial training specified in paragraph 2(a), above. The suspension shall commence on March 1, 2018 and shall continue until April 30, 2018, inclusive.

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $1,500.00.

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that integrity, trust, and professional conduct are at the core of the practice of Pharmacy and the delivery of care to the public. The Panel observed that Pharmacy is a self-regulated profession, and that the Panel’s role is to uphold the College’s mandate to ensure that the public is protected and the public trust is maintained.

The Panel expressed its view that the Member’s conduct was totally unacceptable. The Panel pointed out that the provision of narcotics carries with it added responsibility, both due to the nature of the medications and the population receiving them. The Panel indicated its concern that the Member failed in his responsibilities as a pharmacist by inappropriately dispensing narcotics to patients without questioning the outcome and potential harm that could occur.

The Panel expressed its hope that this Order, including the remediation imposed, will be sufficient to deter similar conduct in the future and will motivate the Member to provide the best possible care to his patients.


Thomas McAnulty (OCP #203604) and T.B. McAnulty Pharmacist Professional Corporation, as holder of Certificate of Accreditation #303416 for Tom’s Pharmacy

At a hearing on March 29, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. McAnulty with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

  • In or about the period from October 6, 2014 to October 6, 2016, he failed to complete a physical count and reconciliation every 6 months as required by the College’s Medication Procurement and Inventory Management Policy with respect to the inventory of narcotics and controlled drugs;
  • In or about the period from October 6, 2014 to October 6, 2016, he failed to keep records as required by the College’s Medication Procurement and Inventory Management Policy with respect to the inventory of narcotics and controlled drugs;
  • In or about the period from January 1, 2016 to October 6, 2016, he dispensed prescription drugs, controlled drugs, narcotics, and/or targeted substances without a valid prescription, namely [drug].

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession
  • Contravened a federal or provincial law or municipal by-law with respect to the distribution, sale or dispensing of any drug or mixture of drugs, and in particular:
    • In or about the period from January 1, 2016 to October 6, 2016, he contravened section G.03.002 of the Food and Drug Regulations, C.R.C., c. 870, as amended, made under the Food and Drugs Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. F-27, as amended, by dispensing [drug] without a valid prescription
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as unprofessional

At the same hearing, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of proprietary misconduct against Mr. McAnulty and T.B. McAnulty Pharmacist Professional Corporation, as holder of Certificate of Accreditation #303416 for Tom’s Pharmacy, with respect to the following incidents:

  • In or about the period from August 29, 2016 to October 6, 2016, he failed to abide by an undertaking given to the College and/or misled the College when he assured the College he was no longer engaging in sterile compounding but continued to do so

In particular, the Panel found that Mr. McAnulty and T.B. McAnulty Pharmacist Professional Corporation, as holder of Certificate of Accreditation #303416 for Tom’s Pharmacy:

  • Failed to abide by an undertaking given to the College
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the operation of a pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as dishonourable and unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. That the Registrar is directed to impose specified terms, conditions or limitations on the Member’s Certificate of Registration, and in particular:

(a) That the Member shall complete successfully, at his own expense, the ProBE Program on Professional/Problem Based Ethics for healthcare professionals, with an unconditional pass, within twelve (12) months of the date of this Order;

(b) That the Member shall comply with the terms of his monitoring contract with the Work, Stress and Health Program of CAMH for the full duration of the contract;

(c) That for a period of 3 years to commence on the day following the completion of the suspension set out in paragraph 3, or any lesser period that the Discipline Committee on application may subsequently determine to be appropriate, the Member shall be prohibited from:

i. Acting as a narcotics signer in any pharmacy;

ii. Acting as a Designated Manager in any pharmacy;

3. That the Registrar suspend the Member’s Certificate of Registration for a period of three months, with one month of the suspension to be remitted on condition that the Member complete the remedial training specified in paragraph 2(a), above.

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $3,000.00.

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that integrity and trust are paramount to the profession of pharmacy, as pharmacists provide care to the public and, in return, are held in high regard for their role in the provision of healthcare in Ontario.

The Panel noted that pharmacy is a self regulated profession. The practice of pharmacy is a privilege that carries with it significant obligations to the public, the profession, and to oneself.

The Panel related that the Member’s failure as an owner, Designated Manager, and pharmacist to maintain proper inventory controls was of serious concern to the Panel.

The Panel expressed its view that when the Member entered an undertaking with the College to cease sterile compounding, the College expected his full compliance on this issue. Although he was trying to fulfill his obligations of continuing patient care, he did so in a manner such that patient safety was put at risk. This Panel indicated that it viewed the subject matter of that undertaking and the Member’s failure to adhere to it very seriously.

The Panel expressed its expectation the Member will complete the remedial training ordered and use this opportunity that he has been given to improve his professional conduct.


Boules Awad (OCP #604940)

At a hearing on April 4, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Awad in that he:

READ MORE

  • Submitted accounts or charges for services that he knew were false or misleading to the insurers of certain identified persons for one or more of certain identified prescriptions;
  • Falsified pharmacy records relating to his practice in relation to claims made to the insurers of certain identified persons for one or more of certain identified prescriptions;
  • Failed to reverse billings improperly charged to the insurers of certain identified persons for one or more of certain identified prescriptions after being requested to do so;
  • Failed to respond to the inquiries and requests of his patients.

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession;
  • Falsified records relating to his practice;
  • Signed or issued, in his professional capacity, a document that he knew contained a false or misleading statement;
  • Submitted an account or charge for services that he knew was false or misleading;
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act or acts relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional.

At the same hearing, the Panel made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Awad with respect to:

  • Comments made during a phone call with his patient, [Person A], on January 15, 2017.

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Abused a patient, verbally or physically;
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act or acts relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional.

At the same hearing, the Panel also made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Awad in that he:

  • Falsified pharmacy records relating to his practice in relation to claims made to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program on behalf of [Person B] for one or more of certain identified prescriptions;
  • Submitted false claims to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program on behalf of [Person B] for one or more of certain identified prescriptions.

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession;
  • Falsified records relating to his practice;
  • Signed or issued, in his professional capacity, a document that he knew contained a false or misleading statement;
  • Submitted an account or charge for services that he knew was false or misleading;
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act or acts relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional.

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. Directing the Registrar to suspend the Member’s certificate of registration for a period of 6 months, with 1 month remitted if the Member successfully completes the coursework set out in the Order

3. Directing that the following terms, conditions or limitations be imposed on the Member’s certificate of registration:

a. that the Member shall complete successfully, at his own expense:

i. the ProBE Program on Professional/Problem Based Ethics for Healthcare Professionals, with an unconditional pass, within twelve (12) months of the date of this Order, and

ii. the ProBE Plus Program, within twenty-six (26) months of the date of this Order;

b. that the Member is prohibited from:

i. acting as Designated Manager at any pharmacy for a period of three (3) years, commencing on September 4, 2018,

ii. having any proprietary interest in a pharmacy as a sole proprietor or partner, or director or shareholder in a corporation that owns a pharmacy, or in any other capacity, for a period of three (3) years, commencing on September 4, 2018, and

iii. receiving any remuneration as a pharmacist or related in any way to the operation of a pharmacy other than remuneration based on hourly or weekly rates or salary, for a period of three (3) years, commencing on September 4, 2018

4. Costs to the College In the amount of $5,000.00

In its reprimand, the Panel expressed its extreme disappointment with the Member’s actions.
The Panel observed that members of the public, and patients, hold the pharmacy profession in high regard. As such, it is expected that pharmacists conduct themselves with the highest degree of professionalism and respect to the public. The Panel noted that the Member’s use of inappropriate language towards a patient is inexcusable and did not satisfy the public interest.

The Panel pointed out that it is a privilege, not a right, to practice pharmacy. The Panel expressed its expectation the Member has learned from this process, that he will improve his practice of pharmacy, and that he will work hard to regain the public trust he has lost through his actions.

The Panel voiced its expectation that the Member will practice with personal and professional integrity, and that he will never appear before a panel of the Discipline Committee again.


Zafar Ahmad (OCP #212220)

At a hearing on April 13, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Ahmad with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

  • That he signed or issued, in his professional capacity, documents that he knew or ought to have known contained false or misleading statements in connection with claims made for certain identified drugs and/or other products;
  • That he submitted accounts or charges for services that he knew or ought to have known were false or misleading in connection with claims made for certain identified drugs and/or other products

In particular, the Panel found that he

  • Failed to maintain the standards of practice of the profession
  • Signed or issued, in his professional capacity, documents that he knew or ought to have known contained false or misleading statements
  • Submitted accounts or charges for services that he knew or ought to have known were false or misleading
  • Contravened a federal or provincial law or municipal by-law with respect to the distribution, sale or dispensing of any drug or mixture of drugs, and in particular, sections 5 and 15(1) of the Ontario Drug Benefit Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.10, as amended
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as dishonourable and unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. That the Registrar is directed to impose specified terms, conditions or limitations on the Member’s Certificate of Registration, and in particular:

a. That the Member complete successfully with an unconditional pass, at his own expense, and within 12 months of the date the Order is imposed, the ProBE Program on Professional / Problem-based Ethics for Health Care Professionals offered by the Center for Personalized Education for Physicians; and,

b. That for a period of three years, to commence on April 13, 2018, the Member shall be prohibited from acting as the Designated Manager of any pharmacy;

c. That for a period of three years, to commence on April 13, 2018, the Member shall be prohibited from having a proprietary interest in any pharmacy, and from receiving remuneration for his work as a pharmacist other than remuneration based on hourly or weekly rates.

3. That the Registrar suspend the Member’s Certificate of Registration for a period of eight months, with one month of the suspension to be remitted on condition that the Member complete the remedial training as specified in paragraph 2(a). The suspension shall commence on April 13, 2018, and shall continue until November 12, 2018, inclusive. If the remitted portion of the suspension is required to be served by the Member because he fails to complete the remedial requirement specified in paragraph 2(a), that portion of the suspension shall commence on April 13, 2019, and shall continue until May 12, 2019, inclusive.

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $4,000.00

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that, as a shareholder and director, the Member submitted unsubstantiated claims over a two year period. The Panel expressed its view that he failed in his duties as a Designated Manager.

The Panel observed that volume of unsubstantiated claims over a two year period of time, which amounted to $35,000.00, is an example of the Member’s disregard for the trust that has been placed in him by the public and the profession.

The Panel pointed out that the practice of pharmacy is a privilege and is held in high regard, and that the pharmacy profession comes with significant obligations to the public, the profession and to oneself. The Panel related that the Member has violated that trust.

The Panel expressed its expectation that the Member will reflect, commit to remediation, and change the way he practices. The Panel indicated its further expectation the Member will not appear again before a panel of the Discipline Committee.


Allen Chow (OCP #69841)

At a hearing in writing on March 23, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Chow with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

  • That he practised the profession and dispensed while his ability to do so was impaired by a substance on or about December 4, 2012

In particular, the Panel found that he:

  • Practised the profession while his ability to do so was impaired by a substance
  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act or acts relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regarding to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional

At the same hearing, the Panel made findings of professional misconduct against Mr. Chow with respect to the following incidents:

  • That he Committed 18 sexual assaults and administered (on 17 occasions) a stupefying or overpowering drug with intent to enable the commission of an indictable offence (namely, sexual assault), contrary to Section 272(2) and Section 246(b) of the Criminal Code of Canada, with respect to which he was convicted on or about May 12, 2015
  • That he misappropriated, obtained and/or transported from the Pharmacy a controlled drug, Lorazepam, that had not been prescribed for him, and/or
  •  That he sold, provided, delivered, administered, gave and/or transported Lorazepam to or for an individual, without a prescription and/or proper authorization, without keeping accurate records in relation to those transactions, and/or for an improper purpose

In particular, the Panel found that he:

  • Was found guilty of an offence that is relevant to his suitability to practise
  • Failed to maintain a standard of practice of the profession
  • Dispensed or sold drugs for an improper purpose
  • Contravened the Act, the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act, the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991, or the regulations under those Acts, and in particular, section 155 of the Drug and Pharmacies Regulation Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.4, as amended, and s.4 and /or 154 of O Reg 58/11 under that Act
  • Contravened a federal or provincial law or municipal by-law with respect to the distribution, sale or dispensing of any drug or mixture of drugs, and in particular, section C.01.041 of the Food and Drug Regulations, C.R.C., c. 870, as amended; section 5 of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, S.C. 1996, c. 19, as amended; and/or section 51 of the Benzodiazepines and Other Targeted Substances Regulations, S.O.R./2000-217, as amended
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

  • A reprimand, to be administered on a date to be determined
  • An Order directing the Registrar to revoke Mr. Chow’s Certificate of Registration
  • Costs to the College in the amount of $5,000

The reprimand in this matter remains outstanding.

Mr. Chow entered into an Acknowledgment & Undertaking as part of the resolution of allegations of professional misconduct at a hearing of before a Panel of the Discipline Committee.

Pursuant to the Acknowledgment & Undertaking dated October 5, 2016, Mr. Chow undertook that he will not reapply to the College or in any way seek the reinstatement of his certificate of registration with the College for any class of membership.


Lilian Fam (OCP #608926)

At a hearing on April 23, 2018, a Panel of the Discipline Committee made findings of professional misconduct against Ms. Fam with respect to the following incidents:

READ MORE

  • Between about August 1, 2014 and December 31, 2015, she submitted charges to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program for certain identified drugs and/or products that she did not dispense
  • Between about August 1, 2014 and December 31, 2015, she created false and/or misleading pharmacy records documenting the dispensing of certain identified drugs and/or products that she did not dispense

In particular, the Panel found that she

  • Contravened a federal or provincial law or municipal by-law with respect to the distribution, sale or dispensing of any drug or mixture of drugs, and in particular, she contravened s. 15(1)(b) of the Ontario Drug Benefit Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. O.10
  • Permitted, consented to or approved, either expressly or by implication, the commission of an offence against an Act relating to the practice of pharmacy or to the sale of drugs by a corporation of which she was a director
  • Engaged in conduct or performed an act relevant to the practice of pharmacy that, having regard to all the circumstances, would reasonably be regarded by members of the profession as disgraceful, dishonourable and unprofessional

The Panel imposed an Order which included as follows:

1. A reprimand

2. Directing the Registrar to suspend the Member’s certificate of registration for a period of 4 months, with 3 months of the suspension to be remitted on condition that the Member complete the remedial training specified below in paragraph 3(a); the suspension shall run from June 1, 2018 and shall continue until June 30, 2018, inclusive; if the remitted portion of the suspension is required to be served, then the remitted portion of the suspension shall run from April 23, 2019 until July 22, 2019, inclusive

3. Directing the Registrar to impose specified terms, conditions or limitations on the Member’s certificate of registration as follows:

a. the Member must successfully complete with an unconditional pass, at her own expense and within 12 months of the date of this Order, the ProBE Program on professional / problem-based ethics for health care professionals offered by the Centre for Personalized Education for Physicians;

b. for a period of three years from the date of this Order, the Member shall be prohibited from:

i. having a proprietary interest of any kind in a pharmacy;

ii. acting as a Designated Manager in any pharmacy; and

iii. receiving any remuneration for her work as a pharmacist other than remuneration based on hourly or weekly rates only;

c. for a period of two years from the date of this Order, the Member shall:

i. be required to notify the College in writing of the name(s), address(es) and telephone number(s) of all pharmacy employer(s) within fourteen days of commencing employment in a pharmacy;

ii. provide her pharmacy employer(s) with a copy of the Agreed Statement of Facts and Joint Submission on Order in this matter, or a copy of the Discipline Committee Panel’s Decision and Reasons in this matter; and

iii. only engage in the practice of pharmacy for an employer who agrees to write to the College within fourteen days of the Member’s commencing employment, confirming that it has received a copy of the required documents identified above, and confirming that the employer is not remunerating the Member on any basis other than hourly or weekly rates.

4. Costs to the College in the amount of $5,000.00

In its reprimand, the Panel noted that, as a pharmacist, the Member is part of a profession that is highly respected within the healthcare system and the community at large. The public expects pharmacists to act with integrity and trust. In addition, pharmacists have an accountability to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program for submitting valid claims.

The Panel pointed out that the Member acknowledged her responsibility that the Pharmacy submitted charges to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program for drugs that were not dispensed.
The Panel recognized that there may have been unique mitigating factors; nevertheless, as a Director and Shareholder of the Pharmacy, the Member was required to ensure the accuracy of claims to the Ontario Drug Benefit Program, which depends on trust and integrity.

The Panel expressed its disappointment, and that of the profession at large, in this type of conduct. The Panel related its hope that the Member will not appear before a panel of the Discipline Committee of the College of Pharmacists in the future.


The full text of these decisions is available at www.canlii.org

CanLii is a non-profit organization managed by the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. CanLii’s goal is to make Canadian law accessible for free on the Internet.