Vancouver, BC – British Columbia’s 26 regulated health professions, governed by 22 colleges under the Health Professions Act, and 1 under the Social Workers Act, have incorporated under the Society Act to become the Health Profession Regulators of BC Society.
“This is an important step forward for all of us,” says Cynthia Johansen, registrar and CEO of the College of Registered Nurses of BC and current co-chair of the society. “We have always worked cooperatively in the past to address common regulatory matters; however, the formation of a society provides a legal structure to advance our mandate of patient safety more effectively.”
The purpose of the society is to collaborate on the development of common approaches to core regulatory functions such as registration and licensing, handling complaints from patients, quality assurance activities, and the development of professional standards. As Johansen explains, “There is a lot of depth and breadth of expertise and experience amongst society members, which can be shared with others through joint task forces and working groups. We all regulate our professions under the same legislation. Sharing ideas, resources and best practices will inevitably lead to improvements for everyone.”
In September 2013, the society launched “our purpose, your safety,” a campaign designed to raise public awareness about the role colleges play in patient safety, and to shine a spotlight on the importance of seeing a regulated health professional. “We exist to protect the public,” says Johansen. “We make sure that anyone who uses the designation of any of the 26 regulated health professions is registered with their respective college, and meets all of the required conditions of registration.”
These conditions include graduation from a recognized school and successfully completing a rigorous examination process before being granted the privilege to practice. Health professionals must also complete criminal record checks, provide proof of good character, renew their registration each year, and keep their skills and knowledge up to date.
To learn more about the BC’s health regulators, visit the website at www.bchealthregulators.ca.
The Health Profession Regulators of BC Society is an incorporated, not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to promote effective communication and collaboration between members on matters relating to regulation, administration and education.
Director, Public Accountability and Engagement
College of Pharmacists of British Columbia