Edmonton, AB – A CPSA Hearing Tribunal has found family physician Dr. Ian Gebhardt of Medicine Hat guilty of inappropriate sexual touching against a vulnerable patient.
After reviewing the evidence and hearing from several witnesses, the Tribunal determined the patient’s testimony was credible and found Dr. Gebhardt guilty of unprofessional conduct for breaching CPSA’s standard of practice on sexual boundaries.
Since the offence occurred prior to the implementation of An Act to Protect Patients, Dr. Gebhardt is not subject to the mandatory sanctions for healthcare providers who are found guilty of sexual abuse.
Once in receipt of the Tribunal’s decision, CPSA’s Complaints Director immediately applied to the Tribunal for an interim suspension of Dr. Gebhardt’s practice permit pending the determination of sanction. Dr. Gebhardt opposed the application for interim suspension.
The Tribunal considered submissions by both parties, the Complaints Director and Dr. Gebhardt, and concluded it would not impose an interim suspension at this time. In its deliberations, the Tribunal balanced the duty of CPSA and the Hearing Tribunal to ensure the public is protected with the Tribunal’s obligation to ensure due process and fairness in their decision-making. The Tribunal determined the duty to protect the public is satisfied at this time with the current condition on Dr. Gebhardt’s practice permit, requiring he have a CPSA-approved chaperone present for all patient encounters.
The Tribunal will reconvene to determine sanction. The sanction hearing is currently scheduled for Feb. 7 and 8, 2024.
CPSA can advise Dr. Gebhardt has appealed the guilty finding, however no appeal dates will be set by our Hearings Director Office until the Tribunal has made a decision on sanction.
CPSA Hearing Tribunal decision (trigger/content warning: sexual abuse; sexual language)