The PHO Order at a Glance Q&A

About the PHO Order

  • The Health Professionals COVID-19 Vaccination Status Information and Preventive Measures Order was issued by the PHO on March 7, 2022.
  • The new order requires health profession regulatory colleges to record the COVID-19 vaccination status of all their registrants by March 31, 2022. On request of the CDBC, registrants must provide proof if they are vaccinated or have an exemption from the PHO. It also requires colleges to disclose to the PHO or medical health officer, on request, registrant information regarding vaccination status and place of work, either in aggregate or by individual.
  • For registrants: You do NOT need to provide any information to your college or the provincial government about your vaccination status unless we contact you.
  • All registered health professionals and all health regulatory colleges in BC are required under the Public Health Act to comply with this Order. We encourage you to read the Order to learn more about the requirements set by the Provincial Health Officer.
  • The Order does not have an expiration date.

Process for confirming vaccination

  • The College has provided registrant information to the Ministry of Health (MOH) for matching against the Provincial Immunization Registry. The MOH will be sharing this data matching with the College.
  • Registrants whose vaccination status is not confirmed via the data exchange process will be contacted by their college to request proof of vaccination (vaccine card and photo ID) or medical exemption (issued by the PHO).
  • Once this information is provided, the College will advise the registrant that the College has recorded their vaccination status.
  • Registrants who do not provide requested vaccination status information to their College by March 31, 2022 will be recorded by their college as unvaccinated without exemption.

Further information

  • The Health Professionals COVID-19 Vaccination Status Information and Preventive Measures Order applies to  BC regulated health professionals across all registration categories. We encourage you to read the Order to learn more about the requirements.
  • The CDBC is working with its regulatory partners to finalize the operational processes for complying with the PHO Order. We are committed to providing registrants with ongoing guidance and information as further details become known.
  • We recognize and appreciate the continued efforts of health professionals to protect everyone by being vaccinated against COVID-19 and by following infection prevention and control practices in their work settings.

Who is covered by the PHO Order:

1. Which health professionals are covered by this Order?

  • The Order applies to all registrants of health profession regulatory colleges in BC across all registration categories, including dietitians in all registration categories: full, temporary, non-practicing.

2. Does the Order apply to all College registrants, including non-practising or working exclusively via telehealth?

  • Yes, the Order applies to all registrants in all registration classes.

Requirements for Colleges:

3. Under this PHO Order, what are the colleges required to do?

  • Under the Public Health Act, all individuals and organizations are required to comply with the requirements set by the Provincial Health Officer.
  • The PHO Order requires the College to record the vaccination status of their registrants. This is to be done in two ways:
    • Personal information provided by the College about its registrants will be matched to the Provincial Immunization Registry and the results will be disclosed to the College for its records;
    • For registrants whose vaccination status is not confirmed through the data match, the College will request this information directly from registrants.

4. Why do regulatory colleges have to comply with the Order?

  • The PHO has the legal authority to issue emergency preventive measures orders under the Public Health Act.
  • The CDBC will be required to comply with the Order as long as it is in effect.

5. What is the Provincial Health Officer’s jurisdiction to order that registrants prove they are vaccinated or prove they have been exempted?

  • The Provincial Health Officer has emergency powers under the Public Health Act which give her the jurisdiction to make this order.

Requirements for registrants:

6. As a registrant, what action do I need to take to confirm my COVID-19 vaccination status?

  • You do NOT need to provide any information to your college or the provincial government about your vaccination status unless we contact you.
  • Upon the College’s request, under the Order, a registrant must provide to the College proof if they are vaccinated or have a medical exemption from the Provincial Health Officer.

7. Does the Order require registrants to be vaccinated against COVID-19?

  • This Order requires the CDBC to record the COVID-19 vaccination status of all registrants, but it does not impose a COVID-19 vaccination requirement.
  • Please note that separate public health orders remain in place requiring COVID-19 vaccination for health professionals working in residential care, acute care and community care

8. How will I know whether my vaccination status is confirmed?

  • Registrants whose vaccination status is not confirmed via the data matching process will be contacted by their College to request this information. Once the registrant has provided this information to the College, the College will advise them that the College has recorded their vaccination status.

9. What do I need to do if my vaccination status changes after the March 31, 2022 deadline?

  • You will be asked to provide that updated information to the College when it is available.

Disclosure of vaccination status:

10. How will my vaccination information be used?

  • The Order requires the College to record the vaccination status of its registrants.
  • The College must disclose to the PHO or medical health officer, on request, registrant information regarding vaccination status and place of work, either in aggregate or by individual.

Disclosure of vaccination status:

11. What will happen if I don’t provide proof of/disclose my vaccination status to the College on request?

  • Registrants who do not provide vaccination status information to their College by March 31, 2022 will be recorded by their college as unvaccinated without exemption.

12. Will COVID-19 vaccination become a requirement for practice at a later date?

  • This Order does not address COVID-19 vaccination requirements for health professionals.
  • The CDBC cannot speculate on future orders. It is the jurisdiction and authority of the PHO to make such decisions.
  • Please note the following:
    • Separate public health orders remain in place requiring COVID-19 vaccination for health professionals working in residential care, acute care and community care
    • The Order also states: A medical health officer may make an order subsequent to this Order for the purpose of imposing more restrictive limitations or conditions with respect [to] a registrant in the geographic area of the Province for which the medical health officer is designated, or with respect to a particular registrant or health care settings.

Medical exemptions:

13. What if I have a medical exemption from the PHO?

  • You will need to provide proof of medical exemption to your College. The College will record you as unvaccinated with a medical exemption.

14. What if I have applied for a medical exemption from the PHO, but I haven’t received a decision yet?

  • You will be asked to provide proof of the medical exemption to the College once you have received it from the PHO.

15. Are the colleges involved in granting medical exemptions?

Comments and complaints:

16. I don’t agree with the Order and/or its requirements. Who can I contact about this?

  • The Provincial Health Officer issues orders and colleges are legally required to comply with their requirements.

For members of the public with questions/concerns about rationale for the order, the assessment of risk to the public, the legality of the order, constitutional challenges, etc.:

Patient and Client Relations

Victoria: 250 952-1891

Toll Free within BC: 1 833 552-1891

Email: HLTH.Health@gov.bc.ca

Website: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/governments/organizational-structure/ministries-organizations/ministries/health/ministry-contacts

 

  • For registrants with questions/concerns about rationale for the order, the assessment of risk to the public, the legality of the order, constitutional challenges, etc.:
  • Bonnie Henry, Provincial Health Officer
    4th Floor, 1515 Blanshard Street
    PO Box 9648 STN PROV GOVT, Victoria BC V8W 9P4
    Fax: (250) 952-1570
    Email: ProvHlthOffice@gov.bc.ca

Other COVID-19 vaccine information:

17. Which COVID-19 vaccines are accepted?

18. Where can I get additional information on COVID-19 and immunization?

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