Alberta Health Services places great value on the work that Clinical Assistants and Clinical/Surgical Assistants do across the province, each day.
Their work is invaluable to patients, and to our frontline staff.
AHS is moving to fully implement the employee model provincially, which the majority of Clinical Assistants (CAs) and Clinical/Surgical Assistants (CSAs) are already under.
This change will also allow AHS to ensure that their skills and expertise can be utilized in areas of need, while ensuring that the care is of high quality.
We will honour all contracts to their conclusion at the end of their stated term. We encourage all qualified applicants to apply for the positions that were posted by AHS earlier this week.
To date, there has been no impact on patient care due to this change. In Calgary, CAs and CSAs who were not AHS employees have welcomed this change and some have asked AHS to transition them even before their contracts expire.
There are currently 139 CAs/CSAs working in Alberta with the majority of them already being AHS employees and mostly living in Edmonton or Calgary. During the implementation of a standardized provincial program, more than 80% of CAs/CSAs saw their total compensation either increase or remain the same.
It is important to note that Clinical Assistants and Clinical/Surgical Assistants receive limited practice permits from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta to do clinical work in specific clinical settings and only under the supervision of licensed, independent physician practitioners. This will not change.
We will continue to work with the CAs and CSAs during this time of transition to ease any of their concerns.
Clinical Assistants (CAs) typically provide acute care coverage primarily in the service area where their assessment and evaluation took place. In consultation with the attending physician, the CA assesses both on and off service patients responding to the patient’s medical needs as they arise over the course of the shift.
The role of the CA consists of assisting patients, completing histories and physical examinations, ordering and performing selected diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, interpreting laboratory and radiological results and planning care throughout the patient’s hospitalization. Patient care provided by the CA is carried out in collaboration with the multidisciplinary team.
Clinical/Surgical Assistants (CSAs) typically provide acute care coverage for designated surgical service areas. In consultation with the attending surgeon, the CSA assesses both on and off service patients, providing pre-operative care, post-operative care and intra-operative surgical assistance.
CSAs will complete patient interviews, histories and physician examinations, order and perform selected diagnostic and therapeutic interventions, interpret laboratory and radiological results and plan care through the patient’s hospitalization. Patient care provided by the CSA is carried out in collaboration with the multidisciplinary health care team.
Both CAs and CSAs are required to be supervised at all times by a physician.