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Standards of Practice Consultation—what we do

Professionalism & Standards | Posted October 10, 2019

In 2018, as part of our goal to make the Standards of Practice a tool of regulatory excellence, we began a significant review of the standards and their associated processes by an independent third party.

The review generated 50 standard-specific recommendations that are being reviewed as the standards come up for renewal, as well as 10 process-related recommendations. To date, we have completed 25 recommendations: 18 standard-specific and seven process-specific, resulting in an update to our renewal process.

Best practices

As part of the process-specific recommendations, the review identified 17 best practices to use when updating the standards, plus four to consider post-approval; we are proud to share that we were already following 14 of the 21 suggested steps. We will be working on improving engagement (including the public), using assessment criteria and clarifying consequences for non-compliance of standards for both physicians and patients.

Assessment criteria

The independent third party provided assessment criteria for our standards, which have a risk-based focus and provide an analytical framework for reviewing the process used to develop the standards, as well as the standards themselves. The criteria are intended to ensure the standards are contemporary, relevant and useful. Updated and new standards will be tested against a set of defined assessment criteria to ensure they are proportionate, transparent, balanced, enforceable and attainable.

Pre-consultation phase

We implemented a pre-consultation phase in which self-identified physicians, Albertans and healthcare practitioners provide feedback on identified standards as they are currently written, to identify what is working and what needs improvement. This allows us to make edits informed by feedback and ensures changes accurately reflect the needs of physicians, patients and health care in Alberta.


In an effort to streamline the process and facilitate updating the standards quickly and efficiently, Council approved an amendment to CPSA Bylaws at its September meeting, changing the consultation period from 60 days to a minimum of 30 days. This will allow us to incorporate any changes that arise from member feedback and get the draft back to Council at its next meeting, instead of waiting until the next quarter. For standards that are more in depth, or with a higher volume of feedback, a longer consultation period will be used. As well, we would like to take this opportunity to remind physicians, Albertans and healthcare partners that feedback is welcome at any time on any standard: feedback received outside the formal consultation is logged and brought forward when the standard is reviewed.

Questions or comments? Please contact Chantelle Dick, Standards of Practice Coordinator, at

If you are interested in providing feedback during the pre-consultation phase, please email Participation is not mandatory: you can provide feedback when and if you have any as it fits your schedule, and you can opt out at any time.

New clinical guidelines for injectable OAT for Opioid Use Disorder: CPSA approval required to initiate iOAT

The Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ) released a new National Injectable Opioid Agonist Treatment for Opioid Use Disorder Clinical Guideline on Sept. 23, which outlines the rationale and evidence supporting the use of injectable opioid agonist treatment (iOAT) for the management of opioid use disorder (OUD).

CPSA would like to remind physicians that the prescribing of iOAT falls under the  Safe Prescribing for Opioid Use Disorder standard of practice. This includes the requirement that physicians must obtain CPSA approval to initiate OAT, including iOAT.

For any questions or support around iOAT and the Opioid Agonist Treatment Program, please visit > Your Practice > Opioid Agonist Treatment Program, or contact the Continuing Competence Department at

Minor updates to our Advice to the Profession documents

Please be advised that the following advice documents have recently been edited slightly to ensure they accurately reference the updated Code of Ethics & Professionalism:

Advice documents are fluid and can be updated or edited at any time. Please re-familiarize yourself with these resources regularly to ensure you have the most up-to-date information.

Feedback Request: ADA+C – Sedation and Anaesthesia

The Alberta Dental Association & College is requesting feedback on proposed updates to their standards for minimal & moderate sedation and deep sedation & general anaesthesia.

If you are interested in reviewing the standards, please contact Chantelle Dick. Feedback is due Wednesday, Oct. 30. 

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