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What to Report

CNO’s mandate is to protect the public. We can achieve this by partnering with employers, facility operators, nurses and those who work with nurses. Patient safety is a collective responsibility. We need you to send us a report when you believe a nurse poses a serious risk of harm to patients.

This chart includes legal reporting requirements under the Regulated Health Professions Act. We also want you to report to CNO if you have a serious concern about a nurse’s practice.

Other legislation and practice settings may require additional reports, such as reporting requirements under the Fixing Long-Term Care Act and the Personal Health Information Protection Act.

This chart is intended only as a summary. If you have questions about whether to report a nurse’s conduct, please contact CNO or seek legal advice.

File your report now

Who must report?
(The roles with a *
are defined in the Glossary
Anyone who works with a nurse Employers Facility operators* Nurses
What must be reported?        
A nurse who poses a serious risk of harm to patients X X X X
A nurse who is suspected of sexually abusing a patient. Sexual abuse has a broader definition in   health care than other settings. Read more to ensure you are aware of what constitutes sexual abuse in health care X X X X
A nurse who is incompetent in their care of a patient, who displays a significant and repeated lack of knowledge, skill or judgment, who demonstrates they are unfit to continue to practice, or that their practice should be restricted to ensure patient safety X X X X
A nurse who is incapacitated by a physical or mental condition that negatively impacts their nursing care, and is a safety concern to patients X X X X
A nurse who is terminated, and there are concerns about the nurse’s competence, conduct or capacity, or who resigns in lieu of being terminated, or resigns when there is an investigation into their conduct   X    

A nurse whose privileges have been revoked, suspended or restricted due to concerns about the nurse’s competence, conduct and capacity

When a partnership, health professional corporation or association with a nurse is dissolved due to the nurse’s professional misconduct, incompetence or incapacity X      

If you have concerns about the nurse in relation to patient safety, please submit your report immediately. When there is a legal requirement to report under the Regulated Health Professions Act, you must do so within 30 days of the incident. In any event, we encourage you to submit the report as quickly as possible.

CNO cannot address the following issues:

  • Labour relations (for example, workload issues and nurse-patient ratios)
  • Health care professionals who are not nurses (for example, reports for an occupational therapist or physician)
  • Concerns about health care facilities

These issues are better handled by the workplace, a nursing union, association or the appropriate regulatory body. If your issue with a nurse falls under one of these categories, talk to the appropriate person in your workplace.

If you’re not sure whether your issue is something CNO can address, please contact legal counsel and/or contact CNO.

File your report now

Page last reviewed July 25, 2022