Volume 9 | No. 4 | July / August 2021 query_builder 1 minute

Treating unvaccinated patients

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While the majority of eligible British Columbians have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to date, there are still patients who have chosen not to receive it for personal reasons.

Registrants must ensure unvaccinated patients are given the same access to care as vaccinated patients. It would be indefensible from an ethical point of view for a registrant to require documented proof that a patient has been vaccinated as a prerequisite for attending their office. However, it is reasonable for a registrant to request that patients report their vaccine status to them. Once aware of a patient's vaccine status, registrants should manage appointment times in a way that does not compromise the health of other patients or their medical office staff.

If a patient is reluctant about the COVID-19 vaccine, registrants should discuss with the patient their reasons for the reluctance. Registrants are expected to answer questions to the best of their ability, and refer patients to supported scientific evidence about the vaccine from the BCCDC and other reputable sources.

More information can be found from the Canadian Medical Protective Association’s guidance on the expectations of care around the COVID-19 vaccine.