Peer and Practice Assessment Policies

The Peer and Practice Assessment is a learning opportunity designed to assess member's knowledge, skill and judgement based on the Integrated Competencies for Dietetic Education and Practice (ICDEP) and other College's Standards.

The Purpose of the Colleges’ Practice Assessment is:

  • To meet statutory obligations under the Regulated Health Professions Act (RHPA), 1991
  • To assure the public and stakeholders that Registered Dietitians (RDs) practice safely, competently and ethically.
  • To provide positive reinforcement to RDs who provide safe, ethical and competent nutrition services.
  • To assist RDs in improving their individual competence in a positive and supportive environment using processes that are flexible and acceptable to members.

Notification

Members who are required to undergo a peer and practice assessment are entitled to at least 14 days’ notice of the start of the assessment. Members required to participate (directed and randomly selected) for the Practice Assessment (PPA) will be notified in February of their requirement to complete a PPA in that year.

Compliance

The College’s PPA is mandatory for all members, whether selected randomly or otherwise. If a member does not fully participate in the PPA or cooperate with an assessor or the QA Committee, the Committee may refer the matter to the Inquiries, Complaints and Reports Committee (ICRC).

Format

The Peer and Practice Assessment consists of 2 components: Step1: Multisource Survey (360° Feedback), Step 2: Chart Review/ Stimulated Recall and Behaviour Based Interview.

The Peer and Practice assessment may also include, but is not limited to, one or more of the following virtual and/or in-person assessment methods:

  • requiring the member to answer, orally or in writing, questions that relate to the member’s practice;
  • requiring the member to solve simulated problems or case studies that relate to the practice of dietetics;
  • reviewing client records and the member’s self-assessment and professional development records; and
  • interviewing or surveying the member and their employer, employees, colleagues, peers and, clients.

Policy Statement

Each year the College shall randomly select the names of eligible members required to undergo the College’s 2 Step Peer and Practice Assessment (PPA). The College uses a computer program to randomly choose members to participate in the PPA process. In addition, a member may be required to undergo the College’s PPA for other reasons (e.g., non-compliance with other QA requirements such as the SDL tool or JKAT or as directed by the Quality Assurance Committee (QAC).

Procedure

1. Members Eligible for Random Selection
  1. The College will randomly select 10% of its members in February of every year.
  2. The criteria for the composition of the random pool shall exclude:
    1. Members not practicing in Ontario;
    2. Members on leave
    3. Those whose certificates of registration are under suspension;
    4. Those with temporary memberships;
    5. Members who became General Members less those 12 months prior to the random selection date
    6. Members who completed the College’s Peer and Practice Assessment within the previous five years.
    7. Those entitled to automatic deferrals (as per #3 below):
      • CDO QA Committee members
      • CDO Professional Practice Staff
      • CDO PPA Assessors
2. Referred Members

A member may be required to undergo the Peer and Practice Assessment:

  1. If the Committee finds that they have not complied with the submission of the Self-Directed Learning Tool and/or the Jurisprudence Knowledge and Assessment Tool.  This includes all general members regardless of the date of joining CDO, year of last PPA or place of residence.
  2. Whether or not any other action has been taken as a result of a report from a Peer and Practice Assessment and the Committee concludes that a re-assessment is warranted.
  3. Based on criteria specified by the Committee and posted on the College's website at least three months before a member is selected based on those criteria. 
3. Automatic Deferrals

If a member, who is in one of the positions listed below, is randomly selected from a pool of members, they will be deferred from the Practice Assessment for a period of one year following the last date of their term; the last date they acted as a College Assessor; or the last date they worked at the College. In addition, automatic deferrals are granted to these members to reduce or eliminate any advantage to the member or appearance of bias that might accrue from their involvement.

  • CDO QA Committee members
  • CDO Professional Practice Staff
  • CDO PPA Assessors
 

If any of the above members are eligible due to grounds other than random selection, they will be required to complete the Practice Assessment.

In such a case, the QA Committee may consider modifying the Practice Assessment to reduce or eliminate any advantage to the member or bias that might accrue from their involvement. In addition, the Committee may consider whether steps should be taken to modify or even suspend the participation of the member as a Committee member, Assessor or Staff as a result of the reasons for referral.

Resignation after Random Selection

A member who resigns from the College after they have been selected for the College’s Peer and Practice Assessment, but before the date of the scheduled Peer and Practice Assessment, will not be required to complete the peer and practice assessment.  If the member reapplies for membership, upon reinstatement, the member will be required to complete the Peer and Practice Assessment at the next cycle.

Policy Statement

Each year the College shall randomly select the names of eligible members required to undergo the College’s Peer and Practice Assessment. A member may be required to undergo the College’s Peer and Practice Assessment for other reasons as well (e.g., non- compliance with other QA requirements such as the SDL tool or JKAT or as directed by the Quality Assurance Committee (QAC).

Procedure

  1. 10% of eligible members are selected to participate in Step 1 of the PPA-Multisource Feedback Surveys. The 2 Step PPA process is attached as appendix A.
     
  2. Each member is required within 90 days of notification to complete and submit electronically:
    • Self-Assessment survey
    • Minimum 6 Colleague Surveys*
    • Minimum 9 Patient Surveys (if applicable)**
  3. Once the survey results are compiled, members whose multisource feedback scores fall outside the reference criteria and a random selection (3%) of members who score at or above the reference criteria set by the QA Committee move to Step 2-the Behaviour-based Interview and chart review/stimulated recall.
     
  4. To continue to focus on strategies for mitigating the risk of harm in dietetic practice, a stratified random selection (6%) from the selected members' cohort to move directly to Step 2-the Behaviour-Based Interview and chart review/stimulated recall. Stratified random sampling divides a membership population into subgroups. The criteria for the composition of the groups or strata shall include the following identified risk-based factors:
    • Practice Setting - Solo Practice (A community-based professional practice/business composed of a single practitioner who delivers health services).
    • Area of Practice: (Clinical Practice; Community; Food and Nutrition Management)
  5. The QA Staff sends each member their Step 1 feedback results and the next steps (if any) in the 2 Step PPA. Anyone who is not required to move onto Step 2 is considered to have completed the PPA and is removed from random selection for the next five years.
     
  6. Members moving onto Step 2 will be notified online of each step of the process. The specific procedure is summarised in appendix B.

**If their work setting makes it difficult to approach patients/families (e.g. ICU), to complete surveys. They may have an option to move directly to Step 2 by contacting the QA Manager to discuss this option.

*If at least 6 Patient Surveys and at least 4 Colleague Surveys have been received and feedback is positive, these constitute completion of Step 1 PPA.

2 Step PPA Process Diagram Step 2 Process Diagram

Policy Statement

Members of the College may formally request an extension or deferral for the Peer and Practice Assessment (PPA) if extenuating circumstances exist.

The Quality Assurance (QA) staff and Committee wil consider the member's circumstances when granting or refusing a request. No request is denied without first being considered individually by the Committee.

Extension: Providing additional time to complete PPA Step Two beyond the due date. Extensions are not given for Step 1.

Deferral: Providing a rescheduling of the start date to complete the PPA in a given year.

Procedure

1. Filing of a Request for an Extension or Deferral
 

A request to extend Step 2 or defer the PPA should be made by email (on the form provided by the College). Someone else may request on behalf of the member if they cannot make the request themselves. Unless otherwise permitted by the College, request for extension or deferral must be received by the deadline indicated on the form. If a member requires more time to file their request, they must give their reason for the delay.

2. Details of the Request

The written request may include the following:

  1. The member’s name and registration number;
  2. Whether the request is for an extension or deferral;
  3. An indication of current work status;
  4. Any information/reasons that is pertinent and supportive of the request (e.g. amount of time being requested, doctor's note); and

The decision may be delayed, or the request for extension or deferral denied if there is insufficient information to make the decision.  In this situation, the member will be notified and may choose to provide further information.

3. Decisions Regarding a Request for Extension or Deferral

3.1 All requests for extensions and deferrals will be reviewed by the QA Staff on behalf of the Committee. The member will be notified by email, generally within five business days, of receipt of their request. 

3.2 The QA Staff will grant extensions and deferrals on behalf of the Committee based upon consideration of extenuating circumstances for members who were randomly selected, such as the following:

  • Current hospitalization
  • Major illness or self/family crisis
  • Bereavement
  • Personal hardship
  • Current leaves of absences, including parental leave

3.3 Request to defer the PPA for members who are Referred, Directed or Required will be reviewed by the Committee on a case-by-case basis.

3.4 If a request for an extension or deferral of a specific time frame is made, the Committee and Staff may consider this time frame but will not be limited by it.

4. Request for extension or deferral reasons other than those mentioned in Seciton 3 above will be referred to the Commitee. Decisions will be made by case-by-case basis.

 

5. The member will be notified by email of the decision. This notification will be emailed to the member, usually within five business days of the decision.

 

6. When an extension is granted, if the member desires an additional extension, they are required to submit a subsequent written request.

 

 

Policy Statement

Upon receipt of an Assessor’s report, members shall be informed of their right to make a submission that may be relevant for review and consideration by the Quality Assurance Committee before a decision is made. The Committee shall consider the member’s submission and the Assessor's report when making a decision.

Procedure

1. Filing a Submission that may be relevant to consider

1.1 Any member of the College who wishes the Committee to consider other facts or information (a submission) relevant to assessor’s report before a decision is made are welcome to submit to their dashboard. 

1.2 The submission should be received within 14 days from the date of the notification of the Assessor’s report. The member will receive an automatic message that the College received their submission. 

2. Decision Regarding a Member’s Submission

2.1 The Committee, or a panel thereof, will review both the member’s submission and the assessor’s report. 

2.2 Outocome of the review of Submission and Assessor's Report may result in the following next steps"

  1. Accept the assessor's report and continue with the PPA process
  2. Require member to undergo a second PPA (Step 2) with the same or different assessor
  3. Any other remedy within the authority of the Committee
  4. A decision may be delayed if the Committee requires additional information to make a decision.
3. The Committee may require the member to pay for the cost of a new PPA depending on the circumstances.

Policy Statement

Members shall have the right to request that the Quality Assurance Committee reconsider their decision respecting an Assessor’s report for their Peer and Practice Assessment.  The Committee shall review a member’s request to have a decision reconsidered.

Procedure

1. Filing of a request

1.1 Any member of the College who wishes the Committee to reconsider their decision of a Peer and Practice Assessment decision is welcome to file a request.

1.2 The College should receive the request 30 days from the letter of notification of the Committee’s decision.  The request should be made by email.

1.3 An acknowledgement of receipt of the request will be emailed usually within five business days.

2. Details of the request

The written request should include the following:

  1. The member’s name and registration number.
  2. Reason for requesting for reconsideration of the Committee’s decision.
  3. Any information that may be pertinent and supportive of the reason for the request.
3. Decision Regarding a Request to Reconsider a decision:

3.1 Request to reconsider a decision will be reviewed by the Committee on an individual case basis.  This will include reviewing information sent in by the member, the Committee decision and the assessor’s report/s on the Peer and Practice Assessment. 

3.2 The Committee may choose between the options listed below:

  1. Do nothing and continue with the peer & practice assessment and enhancement process as per the QA Regulation and policies;
  2. Require the member to undergo a new peer and practice assessment with the same or a different assessor;
  3. Any other remedy within the authority of the Committee.

3.3 The Committee’s decision regarding the request for reconsideration will usually be communicated within five business days of the Committee's decision.

3.4 The Committee may require the member to pay for a new peer or practice assessment depending on the circumstances.

3.5 A decision may be delayed if the Committee requires additional information to make a decision.

Policy Statement

A member, who has a disability (defined below according to the Human Rights Code) and requires special accommodation for that disability in order to complete the assessment, may request that the College make those provisions. The College of Dietitians will work with the member to accommodate their needs ensuring that self-worth, individuality, privacy, confidentiality comfort and autonomy is maintained.

Procedure

  1. A request in writing or some other permanent medium should be received at least 30 business days before the date of the assessment or before the assessment date is arranged. Requests received later will be reviewed, but may result in a delaying the practice assessment in order to make any necessary accommodation.
  2. The request from the member must include documentation of the relevant nature disability and a description of the special accommodation requested.
  3. The College will work with the member to accommodate their special needs and ensure that the member has a fair opportunity to demonstrate competence.
  4. Temporary or permanent measures may be necessary to ensure that the member can participate in the Peer and Practice Assessment in a timely manner.
  5. The College will assume any costs incurred as a result of accommodating a member’s special need.

Policy Statement

The Quality Assurance Committee appoints qualified Registered Dietitians to conduct Peer and Practice Assessments in a fair, confidential, secure and standard format. Assessors conduct Peer and Practice Assessments and prepare reports for the Quality Assurance Committee in accordance with established procedures approved by the College.

Procedure

  1. The Registrar & ED and Quality Assurance Staff will recruit Assessors for the Peer and Practice Assessments based on a written job description outlining qualifications, roles and responsibilities[i]. Positions will be advertised in resume and selection will be based on submission of a resume, letter of application, an interview and references.
  2. Staff will submit names of qualified Registered Dietitians to the Quality Assurance Committee for appointment as a College Assessor.
  3. The Registrar and Executive Director and Quality Assurance Staff will set rates for compensation for Assessors based on market value.
  4. Assessors will sign a contract with the College that outlines expectations[ii] including number of assessments expected to be conducted over a specified time period, roles and responsibilities, compensation, confidentiality, conflict of interest, and term of contract.
  5. Assessors will be provided with appropriate training by the College.

The Committee will appoint an assessor for each assessment. This may be done by a single motion where the next available assessor on a roster of assessors is matched to the member to be assessed using objective criteria.


[i] See Roles and Responsibilities of College Assessors
 
[ii] See Contract for Assessors.