October 15, 2021
BC’s Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, issued an order dated October 14 (released October 15, 2021) on COVID-19 vaccination that applies to health professionals and others who provide health care or services in public care settings.
The order, titled “Hospital And Community (Health Care And Other Services) COVID-19 Vaccination Status Information And Preventive Measures”, is addressed to BC health bodies and the following:
The order also includes a “notice to health professionals” (Part L) that states:
“TAKE NOTICE that in accordance with further direction from me, health professionals to be determined by me and their staff, not otherwise required to be vaccinated under the Residential Care COVID-19 Preventive Measures Order or this Order, will be required to be vaccinated by a date to be determined by me, in order to provide health care or services in the Province.”
The College’s initial review of the order is that, in summary, it applies to individuals employed by, or who provide care in, the public health care system, and not to the majority of private providers at this time. However, the “notice to health professionals” signals the Provincial Health Officer’s intention, at a future date, to broaden the order to a larger group of health professionals, including those who (like most RMTs) are self-employed or who work for a non-public sector employer. Disclaimer: CMTBC does not provide legal advice, and the above should not be read as such.
CMTBC will provide further updates as more information becomes available.
Today’s order sets out an important measure which the PHO has stated is needed to help protect British Columbians, including those who continue to be vulnerable to severe illness and death from COVID-19 even if they are vaccinated, and to assure the public that when they receive health care from a health professional they are not putting their health at risk.