On Friday, June 19, 2020, the Council of the Alberta College of Paramedics (College) voted unanimously to approve the Canadian Organization of Paramedic Regulators (COPR) examinations as the approved registration examinations required of all applicants applying to the general register of the College under the Health Professions Act part 2, 28(2)(a)(iii) and the Paramedics Profession Regulation section 3(b).

The Canadian Organization of Paramedic Regulators (COPR) is a well-established regulatory organization at the national level in Canada, and the COPR examinations are used by several other Canadian jurisdictions as their approved registration/entry-to-practice examination. The COPR exams are typically offered in both Edmonton and Calgary, making it easier for southern Alberta applicants to complete. The exams are offered four times per year with the next exam scheduled for August 2020 (which will be remote proctored to comply with physical distancing requirements).

Approving the COPR examinations as the approved registration examinations will maintain the College’s same level of commitment to public safety, is the most efficient for students and most cost-effective for the College. Approving the COPR examination also provides significant opportunities for Alberta to be a collaborative, forward-thinking leader in the paramedic profession at the national level.

Many of you know that the College has been making strides toward demonstrating our commitment to regulating the paramedic profession together – with our members, our staff and our stakeholders – in the service of Albertans. By moving to a national examination structure, we will be working as a collaborative regulator with other Canadian jurisdictions to help unify the profession across the country. We are very pleased to be working with COPR in this manner and believe strongly that we can even further enhance the level of assessment of all practitioners.

Next steps: The next obvious question is what will happen to the clinical assessment portion?

The clinical assessment portion for all three designations (EMR, PCP, ACP) is still suspended as the Council continues to deliberate on the best way to ensure all applicants are appropriately assessed as they begin practice in Alberta. For the time being, all applicants who meet registration requirements will move to the general register and have a condition on their practice permit that states they will be required to complete a College-approved skills assessment, at a time to be determined by the Registrar.

If you have any questions or comments, please email: Communications@ABparamedics.com.

Link to direct message distributed on June 23, 2020.