In February 2017, Ms. Hanna was referred to the Discipline Committee for allegations of professional misconduct. At the hearing, Counsel for the College advised the Panel for the Discipline Committee that agreement had been reached between the parties on the facts, and submitted the Agreed Statement of Facts as evidence. Ms. Hanna admitted the allegations against her and confirmed that she made voluntary, informed and unequivocal admissions of professional misconduct.

A Summary of the Agreed Facts

On or about March 2009, Ms. Hanna applied to the College for a certificate of registration and falsely answered “no” to the question “have you ever been found guilty of a criminal offense” on the College's registration application form. Ms. Hanna signed the College’s application form and certified that the statements she made in it were complete and correct to the best of her knowledge. Ms. Hanna further certified that she understood that a false or misleading statement may disqualify her from registration or may be cause for revocation of any registration which may be granted to her.

Prior to Ms. Hanna’s application for registration, on or about September 2008, Ms. Hanna was convicted of conspiracy to distribute ecstasy in the United States District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin. Ms. Hanna was sentenced to 3 years’ probation with 180 days of home confinement.

In 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015, Ms. Hanna completed the College’s annual renewal forms and continued to falsely answer “no” to the question of whether she had ever been found guilty of a criminal offense. In each of these years, Ms. Hanna continued to certify that the statements made in the annual renewal forms were complete and correct.

In or about February 2013, Ms. Hanna was found guilty in the United States District Court, Eastern District of Michigan, of making a false statement to a border official. Ms. Hanna was sentenced to probation for 24 months. Ms. Hanna did not inform the College of this second conviction until February 2016.

In 2013, 2014, and 2015, when completing the College’s annual renewal form, Ms. Hanna answered “no” to the question of whether she had been found quilt of an offence not previously reported to the College.

In 2009, Ms. Hanna applied for and was granted a certificate of registration under the name “Brenda Fathalla” and this was the name entered on the College’s public register, Find an Occupational Therapist. Sometime in 2014, Ms. Hanna changed her name from “Brenda Fathalla” to “Brenda Hanna”. Ms. Hanna did not inform the College of her name change until August 2015. Ms. Hanna, through her LinkedIn account, advertised her practice as an occupational therapist under the name of “Brenda Hanna” prior to informing the College of her name change.

From September 2010 until June 2013, Ms. Hanna was employed at a rehabilitation facility in Windsor, Ontario. Ms. Hanna failed to notify the College that she no longer worked at this facility until August 2015.

Decision

The Panel agreed that Ms. Hanna’s conduct constituted professional misconduct and, in particular, found that Ms. Hanna committed acts of professional misconduct as defined in subsections 51(1)(a) of the Health Professions Procedural Code (the “Code”), being Schedule 2 to the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991 (guilty of an offence that is relevant to the member’s suitability to practise); 51(1)(c) of the Code, as defined in paragraph 1 (contravening a standard of the profession), 14 (signing or issuing a document that contains a false or misleading statement), 28 (falsifying a record), 34 (contravening an act); 39 (using a name other than the member’s name as entered in the register); 48 (engaging in disgraceful, dishonourable or unprofessional conduct); and 49 (engaging in conduct unbecoming an occupational therapist) of section 1 of Ontario Regulation 95/07 under the Occupational Therapy Act, 1991.

Counsel for the College advised the Panel that a Joint Submission on Order had been agreed upon. The Panel of the Discipline Committee accepted the penalty jointly proposed by Counsel for the College and Counsel for Ms. Hanna, as set out in the Joint Submission on Penalty. The Panel of the Discipline Committee ordered that where Ms. Hanna had entered into an undertaking with the College agreeing to resign and never reapply for registration, that she is required to appear before it to be reprimanded and is required to pay the College costs in the amount of $5,000.

Ms. Hanna waived her right to appeal the reprimand and accordingly, the Panel of the Discipline Committee proceeded to deliver its reprimand immediately following the hearing.

The full decision of the Panel of the Discipline Committee is available on CanLII.