Bill/Act Updates: 

Bill 46-

In 2020, the Government of Alberta passed Bill 46: Health Statutes Amendment Act, which had a significant impact on dental hygienists in Alberta. The bill aimed to amend the Health Professions Act (HPA) and streamline regulatory processes.
These changes had several effects on dental hygienists in Alberta, including:
1. Moving the list of Health Services Restricted Activities from the Government Organization Act to the HPA: This change means that the restricted activities that dental hygienists can perform are now listed in Part 0.1 of the HPA. It provides clarity on the scope of practice for dental hygienists in Alberta.
2. Moving the restricted activity authorization for each profession: The bill created the Health Professions Restricted Activity Authorization Regulation, which now houses the authorization for restricted activities for dental hygienists. This ensures that dental hygienists have the necessary authorization to perform specific procedures.
3. Reorganizing regulatory requirements: The bill resulted in amendments to the HPA, Regulations, Bylaws, and Standards of Practice. This reorganization of regulatory requirements may have implications for dental hygienists in terms of registration requirements and compliance with standards.
4. Shifting Continuing Competence Programs: The bill moved Continuing Competence Programs from a College’s Regulation to a Standard of Practice. This change may impact how dental hygienists demonstrate their ongoing competence and professional development.
5. Enabling Colleges to apply for amalgamation: The bill added provisions that allow regulatory colleges, including the College of Dental Hygienists, to apply to the Minister for amalgamation. This could potentially lead to changes in the structure and governance of the College.
6. Separation of regulatory colleges from professional associations: With the enactment of Bill 46, the College of Dental Hygienists, along with other Alberta Colleges, fully divested themselves of association activities. This means that the College now focuses solely on its regulatory mandate and no longer performs association functions.

Overall, the passing of Bill 46 had a significant impact on dental hygienists in Alberta. It brought about changes in the regulatory framework, scope of practice, and organizational structure of the College of Dental Hygienists. Dental hygienists in Alberta need to be aware of these changes and ensure compliance with the updated regulations, bylaws, and standards of practice.

https://www.alberta.ca/improving-public-health-care#jumplinks-0

Health Professionals Act-

The Health Professions Act (HPA) was created with the intention of regulating health professions in a manner that allows for shared scopes of practice. This means that no single profession has exclusive rights to a particular skill or health service, and multiple professions may offer the same services. The HPA sets forth a standardized framework for registration, ongoing competence, complaints, and disciplinary processes across all health professions. It also establishes expectations for professional standards of practice and codes of ethics. By implementing this legislative framework, the College ensures that dental hygienists uphold high levels of competency, safety, and ethical conduct.

https://www.alberta.ca/regulated-health-professions

2. Regulatory Changes:

As of August 1, 2023, new Standards of Practice are now in effect. The previous Practice Standards document has been discontinued. You can find more information about the new standards:

https://www.acdh.ca/regulatory-documents/standards-listing

4. Continuing Education Requirements:

In each 3-year reporting period, a registrant must earn at least 45 program credits. It is the registrant’s responsibility to report each learning activity to the College’s registrant portal with the necessary supporting documentation.

https://www.acdh.ca/public/download/files/223751

5. Resources and Support:

Canada Dental Care Plan

The Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) aims to address the financial obstacles that prevent eligible Canadian residents from accessing oral health care. It is specifically designed for individuals with an annual adjusted family net income of less than $90,000 who do not have dental insurance.
The CDCP provides financial assistance to eligible individuals, making it more affordable for them to receive necessary dental treatments and services. By removing the financial burden, the plan ensures that Canadians can maintain good oral health and prevent dental issues from escalating.
Through the CDCP, eligible individuals can access a range of dental services, including preventive care, such as regular check-ups and cleanings, as well as restorative treatments, such as fillings and extractions. The plan also covers more complex procedures, such as root canals and crowns, ensuring that individuals receive comprehensive dental care.
To qualify for the CDCP, individuals must meet the income eligibility criteria and not have access to dental insurance. The plan takes into account the adjusted family net income, ensuring that those who need financial assistance the most can benefit from the program.
By providing financial support for oral health care, the CDCP aims to improve the overall oral health of eligible Canadian residents. It recognizes the importance of oral health in overall well-being and aims to reduce the barriers that prevent individuals from accessing necessary dental care.
The CDCP is an important initiative that promotes equitable access to oral health care for eligible Canadians. It helps individuals maintain good oral health, prevent dental issues, and improve their overall quality of life.

https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/dental/dental-care-plan.html

We are committed to keeping you updated and advocating for your professional interests. Stay tuned for the latest updates and feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions or concerns regarding legislative matters affecting the dental hygiene profession in Alberta.