As a result of over 20 years of advocacy, the Highway Traffic Act was amended to provide more specifics around the types of medical conditions and impairments that are considered mandatory to report when assessing and reporting a patient’s fitness to drive. The new mandatory and discretionary reporting requirements came into effect on July 1, 2018. Correspondingly, the Ministry of Transportation’s (MTO) Medical Condition Report form was updated to reflect this additional level of detail.
After problems with the initial reporting requirements were highlighted in the early 1990s, the Ontario Medical Association worked closely with the MTO, in consultation with an expert physician working group, in order to provide input on subsequent legislative changes and the corresponding new form.
The reporting form works hand-in-hand with the reporting regulations to include a list of the conditions and impairments that are mandatory to report, as well as a discretionary reporting section.
The amended regulation also expands the types of clinicians who may report on fitness to drive. Now, nurse practitioners are subject to the same mandatory/discretionary reporting requirements as physicians and optometrists, and occupational therapists have the authority to make discretionary reports.
For any impairment or condition listed below, report as follows in the chart below. Do not report transient or non-recurrent conditions, or modest or incremental changes attributable to natural aging where overall, the individual is still fit to drive.
Physicians must use their judgement to decide when to report. Physicians who comply with the regulations, and report a patient unfit to drive for one of the mandatory conditions listed below, will not be subject to liability. Conversely, failing to report a patient whose condition falls under the mandatory reporting category may leave the physician open to liability.
Notes on the form:
Discretionary Reporting Requirements
As a result of the amendment, physicians now also now have discretion to report other medical conditions—functional and visual impairments—that may make it dangerous for a patient to drive, and which are not covered in the prescribed list for mandatory reporting.
It is important to note that discretionary reporting is not a duty – i.e., physicians are not required to make a discretionary report, but rather, have the authority to do so.
With the extensive mandatory list articulated in the regulation, it is likely there will be fewer circumstances in which physicians are unsure of whether or not to report. However, if a physician is unsure, but reasonably believes that a patient may present a danger behind the wheel, the physician should err on the side of caution and report the patient to the MTO. Physicians who use their discretion to report a patient will not be subject to liability. Whether or not a physician would be liable for failing to report a discretionary case is less clear, though, in light of the case law, there is the possibility of such a finding.
Is there a fee code for this form?
The current fee code (K035) and fee for completing a Medical Condition Report stays the same.
To get copies of the Medical Condition Report form:
You can submit the completed form via mail or fax. Please be sure to submit both pages of the completed form, and make sure to keep a copy for your records.
You may contact the Ministry of Transportation’s Driver Improvement Office directly (see contact information below), or provide your comments to the OMA to be passed on.
Information on Reporting:
Assessing Fitness to Drive:
For more information, please contact the following
For questions or feedback on the reporting form
|Ontario Ministry of Transportation||
Ministry of Transportation, Driver Improvement Office, Medical Review Section
|The amended Act and your legal responsibilities||OMA Legal Services||Legal.Affairs@oma.org 1.800.268.7215 or 416.599.2580 Ext: 3997
Updated on September 22, 2020