Practice Standards and Professional Guidelines

The College develops Practice Standards, Professional Guidelines and Legislative Guidance to assist physicians and surgeons in meeting high standards of medical practice and conduct. The topics addressed focus on specific issues that are relevant to the practice of medicine. Registrants are encouraged to become familiar with these documents and review them regularly as they are routinely updated over time.

A practice standard reflects the minimum standard of professional behaviour and ethical conduct on a specific topic or issue expected by the College of all physicians and surgeons in British Columbia. Standards also reflect relevant legal requirements and are enforceable under the Health Professions Act, RSBC 1996, c.183 (HPA) and College Bylaws under the HPA.

A professional guideline reflects a recommended course of action established based on the values, principles and duties of the medical profession. Physicians and surgeons may exercise reasonable discretion in their decision making based on the guidance provided. 

Legislative guidance provides physicians and surgeons with assistance in navigating legislation applicable to medical practice. These documents are meant to be used as a helpful resource and should be read in conjunction with the legislation they refer to.

Registrants seeking specific advice or clarification on any of the documents or other professional matters should contact the College and make an appointment to speak with a member of the College's registrar staff.