Physiotherapists in Manitoba are governed by their own separate legislation entitled The Physiotherapists Act, which is divided into eight parts. In other provinces, physiotherapists may be regulated by umbrella health legislation whereby a number of health professions are regulated under one act.
The Physiotherapists Act defines the practice of physiotherapy by setting the general boundaries of practice and also by listing some of the included practices.
The Act also protects the public from unqualified persons practicing as physiotherapists by limiting the use of the title Physical Therapist and Physiotherapist or representing oneself as a physiotherapist. Only registrants of the College of Physiotherapists of Manitoba (CPM) have the authority through the legislation to use these titles or represent themselves as physiotherapists.
The practice words Physiotherapy, and Physical Therapy, while not protected directly under the provincial legislation, are protected Federally through the Canadian Intellectual Properties Office as official marks. The use of the official marks has been granted to registrants of CPM.
The Act provides the Council with the authority to manage the affairs of CPM.
The Physiotherapists Act outlines the information about registrants, which CPM must make public, and provides information on the requirements for registration. The legislation provides a process to deal with complaints against members as well as a disciplinary process, which includes decisions and orders that can be made against a registrant by an Inquiry panel.
The legislation allows for Regulations, By-laws and a Code of Ethics to be established and allows CPM to appoint Practice Auditors who can inspect a registrant’s practice of physiotherapy.
The members of CPM have a duty to report other registrants of CPM under certain circumstances that are outlined in section 64(1) of the Act. Also, employers of physiotherapists have a legislated duty to report physiotherapy employees whose employment is terminated under certain circumstances (section 65(1)).
Physiotherapists in Manitoba may also be bound by other legislation such as:
Regulations are divided into 22 sections. Most sections contain registration and renewal requirements. Schedule A (Section 19) contains Standards of Practice.
The by-laws principally concern the administration of the College of Physiotherapists of Manitoba (CPM). They provide the rules outlining:
- Setting of fees
- Holding meetings
- Election of Council members
- Terms of office for committees
- Rights, obligations and privileges of membership in CPM