Assessment Request Pathway

In general, the management of requests for an assessment will be carried out according to one of the following scenarios.

Infected caregiver who contacts the SERTIH

Informant other than the infected caregiver

The caregiver is informed of the process and potential impacts of his/her assessment:

  • Verbal and written information;
  • Consent is required before any other action is taken;
  • Consent includes obtaining the caregiver’s personal information.

The informant is informed of the fact that SERTIH cannot conduct an assessment of an individual without the consent of the concerned caregiver.

The infected caregiver decides not to continue the process, remaining anonymous

SERTIH reminds the infected caregiver of his/her ethical obligations.

The caregiver wishes to continue and gives his/her consent

SERTIH gathers the required information from the caregiver and his/her attending physician.

2 possibilities :

  • If the caregiver’s practice is proven to be safe because it does not involve exposure-prone procedures, a letter will be sent by the SERTIH upon request.
  • If the caregiver’s practice involves potentially exposure-prone procedures, an ad-hoc assessment committee will be formed.

SERTIH’s assessing physician presents the caregiver’s situation to the ad-hoc assessment committee (without naming the individual).

  • An assessment report is written and sent to the caregiver.
  • A copy of the report is forwarded to the caregiver’s professional order, educational institution or employer.
  • If recommendations concerning the caregiver’s clinical follow-up are issued, they are also sent to his or her attending physician.

The informant may be directed to public health officials, depending on the circumstances.

Public health authorities may, if applicable, use the investigative powers attributed to them by the Public Health Act, to advise the responsible organization (professional order, educational institution, or employer). This organization may presume that the caregiver is unfit to practice exposure-prone procedures if he/she has not obtained an assessment from SERTIH.

When the SERTIH identifies a potential health threat to people who have been cared for by the infected caregiver, it reports the situation to public health authorities who then assess the relevance of calling back these people to recommend screening.