7 COBC 2017 Highlights

7 COBC 2017 Highlights 
1. Improving labour mobility in collaboration with the BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism, and Skills Training. 
We received two grants from the BC Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training. The first grant was creating a pre-arrival website for those interested in becoming an optician in Canada. The new website features centralized information and tools to help internationally-trained opticians, high school students, and those looking for an alternative career understand how to become an optician in Canada. Check it out here.
The second grant was creating a series of bridging courses. For Internationally-trained opticians and those that did not graduate from a recognized optician program to become an optician in BC, they must complete a competency assessment to determine if they meet entry-to-practice competencies. If the assessment determines there are any competency gaps, these new bridging courses will help them address those gaps through education.
Both these projects will be utilized by all provincial opticianry regulators across Canada. 
2. Finished developing the new Quality Assurance program with Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and New Brunswick.  
The new Quality Assurance program will help you focus your professional development in continuing competency areas you need to work on and help you reach your learning goals. We spent the last year finishing developing the new program framework so that it could work for all provinces in Canada. In addition we 
Collaborating with other provinces is one step towards standardizing the quality improvement journey for Canadian opticians and maintain labour mobility between provinces in Canada. 
3.  Stenberg College became a recognized school in Canada
Stenberg College became a recognized school in Canada in which students can attend to become an Optician. We’ve continue to work with Stenberg College to ensure that the optician courses and programs they offer meet our accreditation requirements and the needs of opticians going into the future. In addition, we started to develop relations with Stenberg College students by presenting to them about regulation and professionalism. 
4. Continued protecting the title “Optician” 
This year we made continual efforts to ensure that those who are not licensed with the College are not using the title “Optician” “Dispensing Optician” or “Contact Lens Fitter”.  In addition, we continued ensuring that only opticians were practicing restricted activities. We had one court case the ruled in favour of the College to protect the title Optician. Read the press release here.
We need your help to continue protecting the protect by ensuring that only those registered with the College are calling themselves opticians and practicing restricted activities. We need you to report to the College whenever this is not happening. 
5.  Finalized a new set of Bylaws
This year we worked closely with the Ministry of Health as well as our Board members and Legal Council to create a new set of Bylaws. Bylaws are important as it outlines how the College operates. We will be posting the new Bylaws for public feedback shortly in the new year. You can expect to find proposed changes areas like governance, registration, quality assurance and discipline. 
6. Relational regulation benchmarking 
After renewals this year we asked registrants to participate in a survey about the relational regulation culture at the College. The survey gave us insights as to what we are succeeding at, and what we still need to work on to continuing integrating relational regulation into our work and culture. 
7. We witnessed regulatory success with the One Nursing Regulator
The Health Professions Act was amended this year to allow the regulatory bodies for the registered nurses, registered psychiatric nurses, and licensed practical nurses to co-create a new nursing body that will replace their existing colleges. 
The creation of a single regulatory college for all nurses will foster collaboration between professionals, reduce complexity for the public and other stakeholders, and enhance public safety by facilitating more efficient and effective regulation of the nursing workforce. This change in legislation will also allow other Colleges to amalgamate in the future. We are proud to be a part of a culture of innovation, collaboration and change for the public interest. 
Read more about the One Nursing Regulator here.