Veterinarians Act: Legislative Reform – What do you think?
What is the concept?
To establish a mandatory Quality Assurance program in the Veterinarians Act and in regulations inclusive of a statutory Quality Assurance Committee of the College.
Watch a video presentation by Jan Robinson, College Registrar and Chief Executive Officer, outlining the concept.
Why is the College considering changes to this concept?
Within the current Veterinarians Act, there are no provisions for a mandatory quality assurance for veterinarians.
The College Council has, since the late 1990’s, been discussing and introducing voluntary programs to support the continuing competence of licensed members and to raise its profile in the dialogue with the profession. Examples include suggested annual hours of continuing professional development, requiring annual reporting of these hours in licence renewal, the peer review of medical records program which is currently conducted at random in tandem with facility accreditation renewals, workshops on communications and medical records, etc.
While important, these efforts provide limited data to the public on assuring the ongoing quality and safety of veterinary medicine in the province.
The majority of legislation concerning professions, including veterinary medicine in North America, includes elements, if not comprehensive programs, of continuing competence. Council directed the legislative reform activities to include a review of what concepts would be necessary in a revised Act to move in this direction.
What is proposed?
The Veterinarians Act would include broad authority to support the quality assurance of veterinarians. Specific program elements would be included in regulation.
The legislation would support a mandatory Quality Assurance program and introduce a Quality Assurance Committee. The Committee would have powers to require participation in programs designed to assess the knowledge, skill and judgment of a licensed member. The Committee would have the authority to require participation in remediation activities and to impose conditions and limitations on a member's licence until the member's knowledge, skill and judgment are assessed as satisfactory. The legislation would also include provisions relating to the confidentiality and use of information obtained by the Quality Assurance Committee for that purpose only.
What are the benefits?
A mandatory Quality Assurance program supports the continuing competence of a licensed member and fosters public confidence in the veterinary profession. It inherently adds to the integrity of a profession.
All perspectives shared during the legislative reform consultations will be compiled into a report and shared with the College Council. The report will also be available online.
Please note: This is not a final consultation. Legislative reform discussions are in the early stages. The College and Council welcome your feedback on the initial concepts.