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Health and Community Services
June 18, 2010

New Legislation to Focus on Regulation of Certain Health Professions

New legislation passed through the House of Assembly this week will improve public protection and patient safety by providing for the regulation of a number of health professions, including many that are not currently regulated. The Health Professions Act will establish an umbrella model of governance that brings a number of professions together with shared accountability for professional regulation while maintaining their own identities.

“Our government is committed to providing quality, reliable and safe access to health care throughout the province,” said the Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services. “The new legislation will provide professional regulation that will ensure protection of the public through the establishment of consistent licensing, quality assurance and discipline processes. Under this new legislation, medical laboratory technologists, acupuncturists, audiologists, dental hygienists, midwives, respiratory therapists, and speech language pathologists will now be regulated.”

Consultations with those professions seeking regulation, aboriginal groups, women’s organizations, other jurisdictions and the Regional Health Authorities were held between November 2009 and January 2010. These consultations guided the drafting of the act and there was significant support expressed for the model of regulation proposed.

Minister Kennedy noted that the regulation of medical laboratory technologists, one of the professions included under the legislation, is consistent with the recommendations contained within the Commission of Inquiry on Hormone Receptor Testing Report, written by Justice Margaret Cameron.

“Our government continues to look at health regulation from a new and different perspective – one that focuses on transparency of the professions, accountability to the public and development of quality assurance programs,” said Minister Kennedy. “This new legislation responds to the concerns of a variety of health disciplines with respect to regulation, as well as addresses the regulation of medical laboratory technologists as recommended by Justice Cameron.”

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Media contact:
Tansy Mundon
Director of Communications
Department of Health and Community Services
709-729-1377, 685-2646
TansyMundon@gov.nl.ca 

2010 06 18                                                   12:00 noon
 


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