Only dentists are allowed to treat their spouses in Ontario. (Photo: Yingpis Kalayom / Unsplash)

Dental hygienist deemed “sexual abuser” loses license for treating his wife

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An Ontario dental hygienist has lost his license after treating his wife because provincial law prohibits any sexual contact between health professionals and patients.

Alexandru Tanase lost his request to have the punishment overturned, as Ontario’s Divisional Court upheld the sanction, even though regulatory authorities had proposed to allow hygienists to treat spouses.

The proposed legislation had been approved by the College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario in September 2015, but the legislator never adopted the policy.

On the other hand, dentists are allowed by law to treat their spouses.

The province adopted the zero tolerance policy in 1993 to protect patients from exploitation. Consent is not relevant.

“There is no other case of any dental hygienist anywhere in Canada who has been found guilty of sexual abuse for treating his wife,” the court said in its ruling. “It is indeed unfortunate that the (discipline committee) elected to proceed with the complaint.”

It all started with a complaint from a colleague to the College of Dental Hygienists of Ontario. He filed his lawsuit after seeing a Facebook message in June 2016 from Tanase’s grateful wife about the care her husband had provided for her.

The accused appealed to the courts, arguing the law violated his constitutional rights.

The court said the dental hygienist posed no danger to the public, and the sex with his wife was clearly consensual.

Nevertheless, under existing regulations, the panel could not support Tanase’s application and ruled that revoking his licence as a “sexual abuser” and ” stigmas” for posting details of his discipline on the college’s public website was constitutional and did not amount to cruel or unusual punishment.

Unless and until the Ontario government approves the regulation put forward by the College of Dental Hygienists to enact a spousal exemption, the mandatory revocation and ancillary relief imposed by the discipline committee as they pertain to spouses must be upheld.Ontario's Divisional Court

With files from The Canadian Press.

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5 comments on “Dental hygienist deemed “sexual abuser” loses license for treating his wife
  1. Avatar Aleatha Zygmunt says:

    This is RIDICULOUS! This is totally OUTRAGEOUS and another regulation that does not make sense. If a sexual act was being performed in a dental office, that is different. The hygienist cleaned the teeth. The courts and the Ontario Dental Association need their heads cleared if cob webs. A person has lost their lively hood because of this.

  2. Avatar Peter Ashcroft says:

    I agree. Common Sense is again overruled by misleading Political Correctness.

  3. Avatar Grant Nixon says:

    Idiotic decision! The ‘Panel’ had every opportunity to make a proper ruling and to set a new precedent, striking down the law in the case of spouses. Clearly, the rule is discriminatory against hygienists when it does not apply to dentists. I am appalled by their sheer stupidity. This decision must not stand!

    • Avatar Raj Singh says:

      You are so right . It’s a shame that the legal system supports robotic judges. Surely they know that this man and many other dental hygienists would look in their spouses mouth and offer learned advise. It makes no difference if he cleans her teeth , for free , of-course . That’s not in any way a situation of taking advantage of the patient .
      SURRLY -The test is / did he take advantage of the patient !
      Surely this abuse of supervisory position( by regulators) is a greater crime .
      The public in Canada should stand up and protest.
      Anybody able to start a petition ?PLEASE

      • Avatar Raj Singh says:

        Upon careful perusal of the case it is apparent that the legal defence mounted was incompetent and misinformed . The court was rendering a decision on legalese before it by error. . The human sentiment leaked through though !
        This is not a case that falls under the jurisdiction if the College of dental hygienists . This is a man who looked in his wife’s mouth and offered learned and loving advise . This was not a professional in contractual arrangement with a patient . This case did not belong before the college .
        The chairman is a lawyer and so predestined to be embroiled in a savant type discourse . Surely not a desirable lay panelist !
        This case should serve to recondition the legal system that is programmed to bulldoze the public with distant legalize . Injustice embroiled under the guise of JUSTICE .
        Please submit this analysis as a journalist organization to protect the public to the defence team to facilitate a more competent submission to a higher court !