Job shadowing and observing registrants in British Columbia

Individuals wishing to job shadow or observe a registrant must apply for and be granted registration and licensure by the College prior to commencing a period of work experience. 

The College does not support the practice of job shadowing or observing by individuals who are not enrolled as medical students, allied health professional students, or medical school graduates who wish to observe as part of their curriculum, irrespective of patient consent, as it poses significant concerns about patient privacy and confidentiality.

Note: The College practice standard Job Shadowing/Observing does not apply to individuals, including students or graduates, who are employed in specific roles in registrants’ offices and who are members of the office staff.

Accordingly, registrants should not permit individuals who are not enrolled in a regulated health profession educational program or are a graduate of a regulated health profession educational program to

  • be present during patient interviews or diagnostic or clinical examinations,
  • be present in the operating room or during surgical procedures, or
  • be allowed access to patient medical records.

Visiting trainees

Medical students, residents, visiting physicians, surgeons or other medical trainees including clinical observers are considered to be visiting trainees.

All visiting trainees and physicians and surgeons who wish to provide or acquire a short-term learning experience relevant to their specialty and area of practice, which involves clinical contact with patients or includes providing limited medical care in specific circumstances, must be registered and licensed by the College prior to commencing their learning experience.

Registration of visiting trainees is vital to ensure the public interest is protected. College registrants who wish to sponsor and supervise a visiting trainee or physician or surgeon must allow sufficient time for the registration and licensure process to be finalized, which generally takes six weeks.