On October 27, 2023, the Discipline Panel delivered its reasons on Reconsideration following an appeal of the liability decision in the discipline hearing held in 2019 concerning Shannon Whieldon.
Following the appeal of the initial liability decision, Justice Masuhara directed the Discipline Committee to reconsider its findings with respect to three allegations in the Citation related to the administration and management of Oxytocin, a commonly drug used to induce or augment uterine contractions for pregnant people, at paragraphs 1(a)(i), 1(g)(i), and 1(h)(i) of the Citation.
After a thorough examination of the evidence submitted at the hearing, lengthy submissions made by counsel for Ms. Whieldon and the College, and taking into account the directions of Justice Masuhara as set out in their judgement following appeal; the Panel found that the College had proved, on a balance of probabilities, that Ms. Whieldon did not comply with a standard imposed under the
Health Professions Act, and practised incompetently with respect to the administration and management of Oxytocin as set out at paragraphs 1(a)(i), 1(g)(i), and 1(h)(i) of the Citation.
In the last part of the Reconsideration decision, the Discipline Panel declined to reconsider its penalty and costs decision of April 20, 2020, for a number of reasons (starting at paragraph 306 of the Reconsideration Decision), including:
As noted in Justice Masuhara's appeal decision, the Penalty and Costs order was not appealed.
Justice Masuhara did not issue directions to the Panel to reconsider the Penalty and Costs order.
Ms. Whieldon was advised of her right to appeal in the Penalty and Costs decision and she did not exercise that right.
The Discipline Committee's penalty and costs decision was a final decision and the Discipline Committee is functus officio with respect to same. Further, none of the limited circumstances that allow a decision maker to re-open its own proceedings to reconsider a decision it has already rendered apply to this case.
And in the alternative, even if the Discipline Committee could revisit the Penalty and Costs decision, it would decline to do so because “of the extent, scope, severity, and volume of the Respondent's remaining conduct, these findings by the Panel in the Penalty Decision remain well founded despite the removal of allegation 1(c). Likewise, the costs remain proportional and reasonable in the circumstances. The majority of the Citation allegations were proven and the allegations that took the most time and resources to advance were proven by the College. …" (paragraph 334).
In the result, as set out in the Penalty and Costs decision (here), Ms. Whieldon is reprimanded and will be suspended for 12 months. Should Ms. Whieldon return to nursing, she will be subject to various limits and conditions on her nursing registration, including an enduring limit prohibiting her from ever working in perinatal nursing again, as well as requiring her to participate in various remedial activities.