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Is BC NDP new legislation poised to politically interfere with licensing of doctors and health professionals?
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Vancouver, BC - November 24, 2022.

 Health Professions and Occupations ActDoes the BC NDP's new legislation: Bill 36 - Health Professions and Occupations Act, introduced on October 19, 2022, set the stage for political interference in the licensing of physicians and other health professionals? Under sections 519 to 532 of the proposed Act, the Cabinet can make changes to the regulations including disciplinary measures, the composition of discipline panels and the oversight of complaints. In BC, will politics trump science when it comes to health professionals?

The Association of the Doctors Of BC has not alerted physicians and the public of problems and concerns related to the new Act. However, social media has been exploding with comments about the recently tabled legislation.

The following is an article that highlights some of the concerns regarding Bill 36, British Columbia Health Professionals In Shock Over Proposed Bill C36 —Are Their Rights Being Compromised?

"... Bill 36 will give the BC Minister of Health the ability to appoint College Boards who are then required to pass bylaws mandating vaccines for any illness the government chooses as a condition of license, and creating an environment of censorship where if you challenge the government’s position on anything you will face discipline and potentially lose your license. It also allows the College to determine who has good character and who doesn’t and to define informed consent.

... The most pertinent details of the Government’s/College’s powers are left to be disclosed in future regulations free from debate or oversight. Those that are specified are bad enough.

... This practice of leaving the details to future regulations yet to be disclosed, and allowing the government to pass the main piece of legislation without it, has to stop. It allows the government the ability to keep secret and free from any oversight or debate, the most important aspects of the legislation. See s.519 of Bill 36. All the details of this tyrannical legislation are yet to be defined by regulation made by the Lieutenant Governor in Council.

... It also gives the government extreme powers to punish, fine, jail and search and seize, people who the government deems to be performing duties they wish to regulate.

... The proposed legislation creates immunity for people who wrongly make reports or take action against a health professional unless you can show the person failed to act in good faith. See s.91 and 94. Section 94 is very poorly drafted and difficult to interpret. This needs to be clarified!

... This is very concerning legislation.

 

Web Links

British Columbia Health Professionals In Shock Over Proposed Bill C36 —Are Their Rights Being Compromised?

New Legislation Introduced in B.C. for Regulation of Health Professionals.

The proposed legislation can be found online at,
Bill 36 – 2022: Health Professions and Occupations Act.

 

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Interesting that the commentator quoted is Brian Peckford, former PC Premier of Newfoundland.   He relocated to BC some 20 years ago and reportedly currently lives in Qualicum Beach.

His credentials as an impartial observer are not squeaky clean in my view.  According to Wikipedia, " Peckford endorsed the People's Party led by Maxime Bernier in the 2021 Canadian federal election and Peckford appeared on Jordan B. Peterson podcast Season 4 Episode 78, published January 26, 2022, where he claimed that the Canadian government infringed on the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms during the COVID-19 pandemic. On January 27, 2022, it was revealed that Peckford is the lead plaintiff for the Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms in a federal court case which is challenging the validity of the federal government’s ban on travel for people who are unvaccinated."

However I do sympathize with some of the comments about the legislation's impact, particularly the suggestion that supervision of Gov't controls over physician practices are very loose.  The gov't of the day could just run amuck - but is that any different from now?

Regrettably, the provincial College's suffer from exactly the same wild, uncontrolled, and indiscriminate behaviour.  In practice I suspect that replacing Colleges with gov't regulation won't make much real difference.  The College is so fearful of being criticized by the politicians and the government that they don't do anything to stand up for practicing physicians. Today, the BC College's most pressing issue seems to be that of getting a new logo. It can't get much worse.

 

When legislation leaves details to regulations it's erosion of
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When legislation leaves details to regulations it's erosion of democracy! This bypasses legislative debate and powers.

This is not about Brian Peckford's personal issues or the College's indiscriminate behaviour.

This is how bureaucratic government is eroding our democratic system of government. As this type of legislation continues to become the "norm" it takes away the power and purpose of parliament. It overrides that parliament is there to represent the vision and the power of the people.

This type of "bureaucratic law" spreads further a field and affects other aspects of our lives. One need only look as far as the Physician Master Agreement (PMA) between the BC Government and the Association of the Doctors Of BC, where for more than a decade we have seen contract agreements with passages lacking specifics that are yet to be specified, including in the latest PMA that is currently being ratified by physicians.

 

DoBC President Letter expresses concerns related to Bill 36
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On November 29, 2022 members of the Association of Doctors Of BC received a President Letter stating that:

  1. Many doctors have contacted the president with concerns about how these changes will impact the profession, and the way we provide care to patients.
  2. The Association of DoBC "are troubled by the speed with which consultation took place and the bill was passed, without time for detailed analysis to ensure all parties have a full understanding of the implications of such sweeping changes."

Login to read the President Letter or view it on the Doctors Of BC website.