Province-wide Restrictions: New COVID-19 Measures
November 20, 2020
The College continues to monitor the status of the COVID-19 pandemic closely and takes direction from BC’s Provincial Health Officer (PHO), the BC Centre for Disease Control, and the Ministry of Health.
Effective today (November 19, 2020), new orders and restrictions were announced by the PHO, including orders about mask use.
Masks (non-medical) must by worn by everyone in all shared indoor settings and workplaces, unless they are in a screened or private work area.
For TCM practitioners and acupuncturists, this means that masks must be worn both by TCM practitioners, acupuncturists and patients, including in the treatment room, unless either or both is physically unable to wear a mask (a medical note or other similar proof is not required and cannot be demanded).
Dr. Henry stressed the importance in all workplaces to ensure that their safety plans are up to date, and advised that there will be increased inspection of workplaces.
For TCM practitioners and acupuncturists, this means that COVID-19 Safety Plans based on WorkSafeBC’s requirements must be updated and must continue to be followed rigorously, including all screening.
TCM practitioners and acupuncturists are reminded that non-essential travel is now restricted across BC, particularly travel outside one’s immediate community. Travel for work purposes is considered essential travel, but may entail additional risk. TCM practitioners and acupuncturists who commute to work, and/or practitioners who see patients who travel across regions, between provinces, and amongst communities, are required to be vigilant and to include consideration of travel in their screening discussions with patients.
Daily self-assessment with the BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool is required. The College encourages open, honest discussions between practitioners and patients about risk, and steps taken by both to reduce risk. Dr. Henry observed that the transmission of the COVID-19 virus in sectors that are following safety protocols is very low.
TCM practitioners and acupuncturists must recommit to their safety procedures and the PHO’s orders, diligently and without exception.
Please review the new orders and restrictions to familiarize yourself with the new requirements and restrictions. Additionally, the following websites provide regular updates on the province’s COVID-19 response: