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BC Government Steering Committee releases recommendations on health regulation

On August 27, 2020, BC Minister of Health Adrian Dix announced recommendations for modernizing the province’s health professions regulatory system.

The recommendations are in a report from the Steering Committee on Modernization of Health Professional Regulation, chaired by Minister Dix and including Norm Letnick, health critic for the official Opposition, and Sonia Furstenau, health critic for the BC Green Party.

The Recommendations to modernize the provincial health professions regulatory framework (PDF) have implications for all health professions regulatory colleges in BC.

Among the recommendations is creating a new Regulatory College of Complementary and Alternative Health Care Professionals, which would amalgamate:

  • College of Chiropractors of BC
  • College of Massage Therapists of BC
  • College of Naturopathic Physicians of BC
  • College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of BC

The recommendations focus on:

  • Commitment to cultural safety and humility
  • Improved governance
  • Improved efficiency and effectiveness through a reduction in the number of regulatory colleges
  • Strengthening the oversight of regulatory colleges
  • Complaints and adjudication
  • Information sharing to improve patient safety and public trust

The release of the recommendations follows a consultation and review process initiated by Minister Dix in 2018. The process included the release in April 2019 of a report authored by Harry Cayton, and the release in November 2019 of a consultation paper by the Steering Committee.

 Next steps

The recommendations will go to Cabinet and then the Legislative Assembly for approval. The recommendations will also require amendments to the Health Professions Act, currently targeted for introduction in the Spring of 2021. The timeline for implementation of any changes is not known.

In the interim, regulation of CMTBC registrants will continue unchanged. The College will provide further updates as more information becomes available.   

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