Alberta Step 2 Ease of Measures

Effective March 1, 2022, Alberta enters Step 2 of the plan to ease public health measures. Several restrictions were removed, including the provincial mask mandate. Despite that, the College of Acupuncturists of Alberta (CAA) strongly recommends registrants to wear a well-fitted medical/surgical mask continuously, at all times and in all areas of their workplace. The recommendation is based on the following considerations:

  • COVID-19 continues to circulate in Alberta and poses significant health risks to vulnerable populations.
  • It is not uncommon for acupuncturists to provide care to vulnerable populations and the nature of acupuncture requires registrants to work in close proximity to their patients.
  • Continuous masking can reduce the spread of COVID-19, and along with proper hand hygiene, is considered sufficient protection for pre-symptomatic/asymptomatic COVID-19 infection.

Registrants are reminded that they must adhere to the local mask bylaws of their municipality.

PATIENT USE OF MASKS

Registrants should carefully consider the implications of refusing to provide care to a patient who declines to wear a mask. The CAA Code of Professional Conduct states that the registrants “shall not discriminate against, refuse to advise or provide treatment to patients”, and hence access to care should not be denied on the basis of a protected ground or health status, including health conditions that may preclude the use of a mask. Registrants must also consider the health and safety of everyone that enters the practice environment. We encourage registrants to review the “Patient Use of Mask” section in the CAA Guideline: Practicing during COVID-19 when caring for patients who are not masked.

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