Ordre des sage-femmes du Québec

File a Complaint

Ask for an investigation

If you think that your midwife behaved in a manner that infringes the Code of ethics or that she breached her obligations under the Midwives Act, its regulations or the Professional Code, you can request an investigation.

A complaint about a midwife or a request for an investigation of her conduct must be made in writing and sent to the Syndic at the OSFQ head office. You can also contact the syndic by phone. You must let the customer service assistant know that you want the syndic to contact you.

The claim must include the midwife’s identification, a description of the allegations and, if applicable, copies of the documents necessary for the investigation request.

The syndic’s investigation is strictly confidential. During the investigation, she can ask for any information or document from the professional. She can also meet with the midwife and ask for her version of the events. If necessary, she can seek expert advice. During the investigative process, the midwife cannot communicate with the complainant without written permission of the syndic.

The duration of the investigation depends on the complexity of the investigation and the number of investigations in progress. However, if the syndic has not completed the investigation within 90 days following receipt of the investigation request, she has to inform the complainant in writing and provide her with a report of the investigative progress. Every 60 days, for as long as the investigation is not completed, the syndic must keep the complainant informed.

When the investigation is concluded, the syndic informs the complainant by writing of the decision:

  1. Make a complaint to the Disciplinary Board;
  2. Do not file a complaint, with or without recommendations to the midwife;
  3. Refer the request to the Professional Inspection Committee;
  4. Suggest mediation between the parties.

If the syndic decides not to file a complaint, the complainant can request a review from the Review Committee within 30 days following receipt of the decision.

Disciplinary Council

If the syndic’s investigation reveals serious breaches, the syndic refers the complaint about the midwife to the Disciplinary Council of the OSFQ.

Council hearings are open unless the Council orders closed proceedings.

The Disciplinary Council hears the complaint and decides whether the professional is guilty or innocent. The testimony of the complainant, if required, is privileged and cannot be used against him or her in another procedure.

If the Council concludes that there has been misconduct, it can impose one of the following sanctions:

The Council may also recommend to the Board of Directors of the OSFQ that the professional be compelled to successfully complete an apprenticeship, an extension course or both.

It is important to note that neither the syndic nor the Disciplinary Council of the OSFQ can provide a refund or compensation for professional services rendered. Litigations concerning damages and inadequate services must be brought before the appropriate civil courts.

For information after lodging a complaint with the Disciplinary Council, please contact:

The Disciplinary Council Secretary