Practice standards and professional guidelines

The College develops practice standards, professional guidelines and legislative guidance to assist physicians and surgeons in meeting high standards of medical practice and conduct. The topics addressed focus on specific issues that are relevant to the practice of medicine.

Registrants are encouraged to become familiar with these documents and review them regularly as they are routinely updated over time.

Practice standards

A practice standard reflects the minimum standard of professional behaviour and ethical conduct on a specific topic or issue expected by the College of all physicians and surgeons in British Columbia.

Standards also reflect relevant legal requirements and are enforceable under the Health Professions Act, RSBC 1996, c.183 (HPA) and College Bylaws under the HPA.

Practice standard Additional information
Access to Medical Care Without Discrimination  
Advertising and Communication with the Public  
Blood-borne Viruses in Registrants  
Cannabis for Medical Purposes  
Care Coverage Outside Regular Office Hours  
Changing Registration Status to Temporarily Inactive During an Absence from Medical Practice  
Charging for Uninsured Services Public resource
Complementary and Alternative Therapies Public resource
Conflict of Interest  
Disclosure of Adverse or Harmful Events  
Ending the Patient-registrant Relationship Public resource
Independent Medical Examinations Public resource
Injection of Botulinum Toxin, Dermal Fillers and Venous Sclerotherapy  
Intravenous Therapy in the Community Setting  
Job Shadowing/Observing  
Laser Safety  
Leaving Practice  
Medical Assistance in Dying FAQs
Medical Certificates and Other Third-party Reports  
Medical Records Documentation  
Medical Records Management  
Non-sexual Boundary Violations  
Photographic, Video and Audio Recording of Patients Public resource
Physical Examinations and Procedures  
Prescribing Methadone  
Primary Care Provision in Walk-in, Urgent Care and Multi-registrant Clinics FAQs
Promotion and Sale of Medical Supplies and Devices  
Reporting a Child in Need of Protection  
Requests from Defence Lawyers  
Safe Prescribing of Opioids and Sedatives FAQs
Sale and Dispensing of Drugs  
Sexual Misconduct  
Treatment of Self, Family Members and Others Close to You  
Virtual Care Public resource
Withdrawal of Medical Services During Job Action  

Interim guidance

Interim guidance from the College provides information to express or clarify the College’s view on a particular matter. It is intended as guidance for registrants in areas where research and current practice are evolving or changing rapidly, the implementation of processes and procedures may be premature, or it is timely to communicate the College’s stance on an issue before a practice standard or professional guideline is developed.

The common ethical framework to which all physicians and surgeons are bound in the province
How BC physicians in private practice can meet their PIPA obligations
The legislation that provides a common regulatory framework for health professions in BC
The College Bylaws under the Health Professions Act
Additional resources to help patients understand regulation of medical practice in BC