Proposed Amendments to the Health Professions Designation and Amalgamation Regulation

The Ministry of Health is proposing amendments to the Health Professions Designation and Amalgamation Regulation. The proposed regulatory amendments would, effective June 28, 2024, establish the following colleges:

  • The College of Dietitians of BC, College of Occupational Therapists of BC, College of Opticians of BC, College of Optometrists of BC, College of Physical Therapists of BC, College of Psychologists of BC and College of Speech and Hearing Professionals of BC be amalgamated into one college.
  • The College of Chiropractors of BC, College of Massage Therapists of BC, College of Naturopathic Physicians of BC and the College of Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncturists of BC be amalgamated into one college.

The notice period required by the Health Professions Act before the proposed regulation amendments can be enacted will begin on May 23, 2023. The proposed regulation changes are posted on the Ministry of Health website.

The Ministry asks that any comments on these proposed regulation amendments be submitted by May 30, 2023, as soon as possible.

Please submit comments by e-mail to:

Ministry of Health Sets Timeline for College Amalgamations

COTBC recently received a letter from the BC Ministry of Health confirming the amalgamation of 11 health profession regulatory colleges to create:

  • One regulator for dietitians, occupational therapists, opticians, optometrists, physical therapists, psychologists, and speech and hearing health professionals; and
  • One regulator for chiropractors, massage therapists, naturopathic physicians, traditional Chinese medicine practitioners and acupuncturists.

The Ministry of Health intends to complete the amalgamation by the end of June 2024. The Ministry has also committed to providing financial support for the resources required to implement the amalgamations.

College amalgamations are part of the Ministry of Health’s multi-year initiative to modernize BC’s health profession regulatory framework, informed by the Cayton Report and the 2020 recommendations of the Steering Committee on Modernization of Health Professional Regulation. Amalgamations have already taken place to create the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC, the BC College of Nurses and Midwives, and the BC College of Oral Health Professionals.

The amalgamating colleges are developing a plan and process for moving this work forward, including engaging a project team. We anticipate having more information to share about our progress by early fall. Updates will be shared on our website as they are available.

Registrar’s March Monthly: BC-PAN, Amalgamation, New Staff

The BC Public Advisory Network (BC-PAN) recently held a workshop on the Modernization of Health Regulation. BC-PAN was formed in 2019 to promote meaningful engagement in healthcare regulation across the province. The BC-PAN intends to encourage comprehensive engagement on important issues related to healthcare regulation in BC.

At the recent BC-PAN workshop, the group identified that the public might be unaware of changes coming to healthcare regulation involving amalgamation. COTBC is interested to hear from the public about their questions and concerns. A summary from the BC-PAN workshop includes highlights from other colleges (PDF) about their experiences joining other health regulators.  

COTBC continues to engage with the Ministry of Health and the other regulatory colleges that form the amalgamation. We do not have an amalgamation timeline to share. Please continue to check the COTBC website for new information.

New Staff

On another note, I would like to welcome two new staff members to the COTBC team. I am pleased to announce Brenda Carroll has taken on the role of Executive Director of Inquiry, Discipline, Monitoring and Privacy, and Apurva Bhardwaj is Manager of Projects. Brenda and Apruva bring a combination of unique education, work history and skills that are an exciting addition to our organization. Welcome, Brenda and Apruva!



Career Opportunity

Do you have a background in regulatory issues or legal matters? Consider joining us in a part-time role that supports our Inquiry, Complaints, Discipline and Privacy Management Program. 

COTBC’s Inquiry, Discipline and Monitoring (IDM) & Privacy portfolio addresses complaints about registered occupational therapists as provided under the Health Professions Act. This position requires you to design and implement systems and processes, as well as provide operational oversight and support to the administrative and legal functions of the IDM Program.

You’ll oversee intake and workflow, prepare, review, and edit documentation, and manage file protocols, including support for the Inquiry Committee.

You’ll also manage all aspects of the Privacy Management Program under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. The privacy management program includes a set of policies, procedures, and tools to facilitate systemic privacy protection through the life cycle of personal information in the custody of or under the control of the College.

This position calls for the ability to act with high independence, attention to detail and accurate decision-making, and a demonstrated ability to work with initiative and sound judgment. This role is the primary liaison between the IDM Program and other internal teams such as Registration. 

If you want more information on this opportunity, please contact the College’s Registrar and CEO, Carin Plischke.

Registrar’s February Monthly: Bill 36, Projects, New Position

From the desk of Carin Plischke, COTBC’s Registrar

In this news post, we share highlights of the College’s work, including the most recent updates on Bill 36, the Health Professions and Occupations Act (which has received Royal Assent) and recruitment efforts for the newly created position of Manager, Projects.

Bill 36 – Health Professions and Occupations Act

The BC Government has yet to release an implementation schedule or an in-force date for the Health Professions and Occupations Act. While BC health regulatory colleges, including COTBC, continue to operate under the Health Professions Act until there is an in-force date for the new legislation, a fair amount of prep work is being done offstage. We meet regularly with the Ministry of Health and our peers in other colleges. See FAQs About Professional Regulation and New HPOA.

We will continue communicating with registrants, the public, and other stakeholders as more information is confirmed about implementing the Health Professions and Occupations Act.

COTBC Initiatives

We’re off to an active start this year with several key projects underway or about to begin. They include the following:

  • National Competencies for Occupational Therapists in Canada
  • Indigenous Cultural, Safety and Anti-racism, including a survey to all registrants
  • Continuing Competency of Occupational Therapists in BC (pilot)
  • Online registration for all new applications
  • IT infrastructure
  • Amalgamation activities

New Staff Position

As the list of our initiatives shows, it is a busy time at the College. With that in mind, we are recruiting for the Manager, Projects (MP) position. This position is based in the Victoria, BC region, and there will be some consideration for a hybrid work schedule for the right person.

Reporting to the Registrar, this is a key role within the organization. This role implements and manages various large and small projects while guiding the COTBC team to strengthen its project management muscle.

The MP works closely with College team members, stakeholders, and contractors to build project implementation plans and charters, engage stakeholders, and implement, track and evaluate initiatives. This is an ideal role for a skilled mid-senior career professional with program management experience in sectors that require excellent staff and stakeholder relations.

If you are interested in this role, please contact

Look for monthly updates on our projects, the amalgamation and other College news on our website.