Statement on proposed changes to health profession regulation
The Honourable Adrian Dix, minister of health, announced this week proposed changes from a cross-party government steering committee tasked with modernizing the provincial health profession regulatory framework. The steering committee is currently seeking input from the public on its proposed way forward through an online consultation process, which ends on January 10, 2020.
The College Board met today and is intending to submit a written response to the steering committee’s proposal. Registrants and members of the public are also encouraged to provide input.
The steering committee’s consultation paper is available here.
The public consultation page can be found here.
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC has a duty to serve the public by regulating physicians and surgeons, which is aligned with the government’s goal of increasing transparency, patient safety, accountability and public confidence in the regulatory framework. As such, the College is committed to working collaboratively with government, the public, our registrants and other regulatory partners as we consider the full extent of the steering committee’s recommendations.
The steering committee made several proposals including reducing the number of regulatory colleges in BC from 20 to five; establishing an oversight body with responsibility to appoint all board members (both public and health professionals) based on competency and perform routine audits and systemic reviews of the colleges’ performance; and separating the complaints and discipline processes.
Under the modernization proposal, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC, the BC College of Nursing Professionals and the College of Pharmacists of BC will be maintained as stand-alone regulatory colleges. The steering committee further proposed that two new colleges be established, one for oral health and one for all other regulated health-care professionals. While this College will remain as a stand-alone regulator, the merger with the College of Podiatric Surgeons of BC will proceed as was previously agreed to in principle. This College will begin working with the College of Podiatric Surgeons of BC immediately to develop a transition plan to ensure a seamless merger of our two colleges.
The College remains committed to fulfilling its mandate of public safety and protection. We look forward to seeing the results of the public consultation, and working collaboratively to help shape the future of professional regulation in BC.
Heidi M. Oetter, MD
Registrar and CEO