1. How will regulation improve public access to homeopaths?
The College of Homeopaths of Ontario (CHO) has set requirements for entry to the profession. The CHO is responsible for registering homeopaths, setting professional practice standards and guidelines, monitoring homeopaths' competence through a quality assurance program, investigating complaints and reports against homeopaths, and disciplining those registrants who have committed acts of professional misconduct or who are incompetent or incapacitated. These processes protect the public interest.
The regulatory framework also provides the public with a mechanism for complaints and resolution if they are not satisfied with their care.Regulatory Framework
1. What is the College of Homeopaths of Ontario (CHO)?
It is NOT an educational institution or an advocacy association.
2. What does the Homeopathy Act, 2007 do?
The Homeopathy Act, 2007 established the College of Homeopaths of Ontario, which is responsible for governing the profession to ensure the public is protected and the public interest is served.
It sets out:
And it empowers:
3. Now that the Homeopathy Act, 2007 has received Royal Assent, can I claim to be a regulated health professional?
No. A practitioner can only make that claim once they are registered with the College of Homeopaths of Ontario.
4. What was the role of the transitional Council?
During the transitional period, the transitional Council was responsible for establishing the College of Homeopaths of Ontario. It exercised the powers of a council of a health regulatory college, and carried out the statutory objectives of a college to serve and protect the public interest as set out in the Homeopathy Act, 2007, the RHPA, 1991 and the Health Professions Procedural Code. Between its inception in 2009 and proclamation of the Homeopathy Act, 2007 on April 1, 2015, the transitional Council:
5. Who sits on the College's Council?
Appointments to the Council, both public and professional, are made by the Ontario Government, or more specifically, by the Lieutenant Governor in Council, with the process itself being administered by the Public Appointments Secretariat, an agency of the Ontario Government. The Council is comprised of a mix of homeopathy professionals and public appointees.
Selection of an individual for appointment to the Council is based on the person's expertise, knowledge and experience. The individual may have clinical or academic expertise in the practice of homeopathy, health professional regulation, and/or health or public administration. Persons with a demonstrated interest or experience in public service may also be appointed. Each is expected to serve in his/her individual capacity rather than as a representative of any organization or any interest/advocacy group to which they may belong. Appointments may be for a one or two year term. Individuals may be reappointed.
The transitional Council was time-limited. It existed until it had developed a framework to permit the College to fully undertake its regulatory functions. At that time the transitional Council ceased to exist and the regular Council of the College was established. Following elections later this year, the new Council will be comprised of up to nine professionals elected from the College membership by the registrants themselves. There will also be up to eight public appointees.
6. What is the role of the Registrar?
The Registrar is the chief operating officer and administrator of the CHO, reporting to the Council and the MOHLTC and supporting the Council in developing and implementing policies, bylaws and regulations governing the practice of homeopathy. The Registrar is also responsible for day-to-day operations and has statutory duties under the RHPA, 1991.
1. When do I need to register with the CHO?
Now that the Homeopathy Act, 2007 is in full force, anyone using the title "homeopath" or holding themselves out as a homeopath must be registered with the College. Although the full force of the Homeopathy Act, 2007 did not take effect until April 1, 2015., the transitional Council began accepting applications for registration late in 2014.
2. How do I register with CHO?
The College has provided information on the qualifications, competencies, procedures, categories, fees, documentation and other requirements necessary for registration application on the registration page of this site.
3. Will there be a full-time and part-time registration fee?
4. What will happen if I do not register with CHO?
Now that the College of Homeopaths of Ontario and the Homeopathy Act, 2007 are in full force, a person cannot call him or her self a homeopath, advertise as such, and/or hold himself or herself out as a homeopath, unless registered. To do otherwise is illegal. Anyone found guilty could face a fine of not more than $25,000 for a first offence and up to $50,000 for subsequent offenses. One could also be imprisoned for one year, or be fined and imprisoned. These offense provisions are set out in the RHPA and are common to all regulated health professions.
Further, any person using the title "homeopath", a variation or abbreviation or an equivalent in another language while not being registered with the College, or who claims to be a "Doctor" of homeopathy, could face a fine of up to $25,000 for a first offense and up to $50,000 for subsequent offenses.
5. Does membership in an association or organization mean automatic registration with CHO?
No, membership in an association is not equivalent to registration with CHO. Registration is based on whether an individual practitioner meets the CHO's registration qualifications, competencies and other requirements. Membership in one or more professional associations has no bearing on registration with the College.
6. Will CHO be grandparenting current practitioners?
Grandparenting refers to the process of registering practising homeopaths who meet the registration qualifications and other requirements determined at the time of proclamation and when TC-CHO begins to process applications. Additional standards or requirements may be implemented after the initial registration period.
Public safety will be the number one priority when it comes to considering policies on grandparenting.
7. Will TC-CHO offer registration examinations?
No. See the individual assessment page for details on how the competence of individual homeopaths will be evaluated.
8. How will regulation affect naturopaths who practice homeopathy?
There are a number of health care professionals who practice homeopathy in conjunction with their primary form of service. The transitional Council, in consultation with practitioners and other regulatory boards, has developed a policy regarding the matter of dual registration.
9. Will the Ontario Health Insurance Plan now cover homeopathic services?
The regulation of a profession does not confer a duty on the government to pay for its services. Only a few of the regulated health professions are funded by OHIP on a fee-for-service basis. Private insurance carriers may choose to cover homeopathic care and employers may provide benefits through extended health care plans. The decision to cover services is at the discretion of the employer and insurance carrier.
10. Will every TC-CHO registrant be required to practice in English or French?
Reasonable fluency in English or French is important since it is necessary for communication with other health care professionals, hospitals, community health institutions and to understand the laws governing the health care system in Ontario and Canada.
Use of Title
1. My education grants me the right to use the "doctor" title. Does this new legislation allow me to use the title "doctor"?
Practitioners of homeopathy cannot use the "doctor" title, a variation or abbreviation or an equivalent in another language when providing or offering to provide health care in Ontario.
Currently, under section 33 of the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 (RHPA), no one is allowed to use the title "doctor," its variation or abbreviation or an equivalent in another language when providing or offering to provide health care in Ontario, unless he/she is a registrant of:
A person who breaches section 33 may be prosecuted in the Provincial Offences Act Court. If the person is convicted, he/she is liable to a fine of not more than $25,000 for a first offence and not more than $50,000 for a second or subsequent offence.
When the Homeopathy Act, 2007 is proclaimed into force full, the registered title will be "homeopath."
To see the full text of section 33 of the RHPA click here.
Information for Students or Prospective Students
1. When registration becomes mandatory, how will TC-CHO deal with students who are in the middle of their educational programs?
The transitional Council is determining how it will approach the registration of students who are in the middle of their programs. More details will be available shortly. The Council is required to consider public safety as the number one priority when considering registration issues.
2. I have heard that some organizations are claiming that their program will lead to registration with the regulatory body. Is this true?
No, this claim is false. Homeopathic education institutes will be encouraged to set their program curricula to meet or exceed the regulatory requirements.
3. I would like to enroll in a homeopathic program; how can I be sure that the program is recognized and my rights will be protected?
TC-CHO is currently in a transition phase. During this time, the transitional Council is developing regulations and policies, including setting entry-to-practice requirements and standards of practice, in order to register homeopathic practitioners. Once the transitional Council completes this work, TC-CHO will be able to evaluate the educational qualifications of individual applicants. Until then it is not possible to say which programs or courses, if any, will be recognized.
The Transitional Council of the College of Homeopaths of Ontario