As a registered kinesiologist, you are required to practise according to the standards of the profession . But what about your employer?
Sometimes you may find yourself working at a facility that has policies or procedures that fall below or contradict the College’s standards, which poses challenges. Oftentimes you can work together with other regulated colleagues and your employer to increase compliance with the standards of practice.
For kinesiologists seeking new employment, this is an opportunity to find out about an employer’s practices. Researching a company beforehand, asking others who work or have worked there, and asking questions during an interview can make a big difference in securing the best employment.
Understanding the College’s practice expectations can help you know what to look for in an employer. Some common concerns are facilities’ record keeping practices, billing practices, consent protocols and use of unregulated practitioners. There are some facilities that:
- do not have adequate safeguards to keep health records private (e.g. records are not kept in a secure, locked location, or any staff can access electronic records without a password);
- may not allow health professionals access to billing systems to ensure accuracy;
- may promote unnecessary sale of services or products (e.g. they sell only blocks of sessions with no refunds available); and/or
- use overly persuasive advertising rather than informative advertising.
Here are some questions to ask your employer or prospective employer:
- How long do you keep your records?
- How are services billed? Can I see a sample invoice? Do I have the ability to review invoices for my services before they are issued to a client?
- How do you advertise/sell services?
- Am I expected to fill a quota? (e.g. clients seen per day). N.B. Quotas are a flag as it may reflect a practice that is profit driven and doesn’t consider the client’s best interests.
- Do you employ unregulated practitioners? What is the ratio of regulated/unregulated employees?
- What kind of work do the unregulated practitioners undertake? What are your expectations for supervision?
It is important for you to critically assess your workplace or potential workplace. If a facility does not have the proper business practices or operational capability to meet the profession’s standards, you should consider whether or not the facility is a suitable place for employment.
When information is received by the College that identifies a practice concern, an investigation is usually initiated. And while the policies and procedures of the facility may have been in contradiction of the profession’s standards, you may be found to have committed professional misconduct by not adhering to the standards.
Securing employment is a priority, but finding employment that respects your autonomy and skills as a regulated professional is critical. Employment situations which enable you to adhere to the standards make for a rewarding work experience, and allow for the provision of services which you can be proud of.