Developing Professional Standards

One of the College’s legislated duties as a medical regulator is to provide guidance to physicians on professionalism and issues relevant to the practice of medicine.

Standards of Practice

When Nova Scotians seek medical care, they should feel confident that their physician is adhering to professional standards of practice.

The College’s standards of practice are the minimum expectations physicians are required to meet. They are enforceable under the Medical Act and often used in the investigation and resolution of complaints and disciplinary hearings.

Professional Standards Committee

The development of standards is led by the Professional Standards Committee, composed of public members of Council and practising physicians. The committee’s work is informed by broad consultation.

Because professional standards are in place to protect patients, the committee regularly revisits its standards and guidelines to ensure they are relevant and reflect ongoing changes in medicine. In the coming year, the committee will continue to review such issues as virtual care, medical record management as well as physician obligations to provide services.

The catalogue of professional standards along with the CMA’s Code of Ethics and Professionalism and the recommendations of Choosing Wisely Canada are aimed to provide clear guidance to physicians. Physicians are encouraged to regularly access these documents on the College’s website to remain current with their professional obligations.

We gratefully acknowledge the significant contribution of the physicians and public members on the committee for their thoughtful deliberations. We are appreciative of all who participate in the consultations.

The following professionals standards were approved by the College’s Council in 2021 and are available on the College website.