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New legislation to replace Health Professions Act receives Royal Assent

November 28, 2022

Bill 36, the Health Professions and Occupations Act, received Royal Assent on November 24, 2022 and is now law in British Columbia.

The BC Government has not yet released an implementation schedule and in force date for the Health Professions and Occupations Act. The timing for the Health Professions and Occupations Act to take effect will be determined by Cabinet. Until then, the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia will continue to be governed by the current Health Professions Act

About the new legislation

The Health Professions and Occupations Act is a government initiative. According to the Ministry of Health news release, the new legislation enables:

  • Further amalgamations to reduce the number of health regulatory colleges.

  • Creation of an oversight body that will promote accountability, transparency and consistency across regulatory colleges.

  • Improved transparency and accountability around complaints, with information about agreements between colleges and registrants made public.

  • Commitment to cultural safety and humility, with discrimination as a form of professional misconduct or actionable conduct.

  • Information sharing between colleges and other agencies to enhance public safety and protection.

  • Improved governance, with regulatory college board members appointed via a competency-based process.

The Health Professions and Occupations Act follows from three key reports: 

  1. Part 2 of the Cayton Report(published April 2019) 

  2. Recommendations to modernize the provincial health profession regulatory framework(August 2020) 

  3. In Plain Sight: Addressing Indigenous-specific Racism and Discrimination in BC Health Care(November 2020) 

The College will communicate with registrants, applicants, and other stakeholders as more information is confirmed about changes to be made under the Health Professions and Occupations Act, and about amalgamation