BCCNM has transitioned from using the term
virtual care. This better aligns with current healthcare terminology and evidence.
Virtual care is a way nurses can provide and deliver services and care to clients remotely using technology to communicate. As with any other practice setting, nurses providing virtual care services are expected to meet the BCCNM's standards of practice.
Virtual care technologies include the use of telephone and cell phone communication, email, video and audio conferencing, instant messaging (e.g., texting, online chat.)
Nurses and midwives registered or licensed in other jurisdictions
must be registered with BCCNM to practice as a nurse or midwife in B.C., whether providing services in-person or using a virtual care method.
A virtual care assessment does not take the place of an in-person assessment when one is required. When choosing between virtual or in-person care, nurses act in the best interest of their client, use their clinical judgment and follow BCCNM standards to determine the appropriate type of assessment required (virtual or in-person) to best meet the client needs.
BCCNM’s relevant nursing scope of practice and standards apply to B.C. nurses when providing virtual care services to clients.
BCCNM’s relevant nursing scope of practice and standards apply to B.C. nurses when providing virtual care services to clients. Nurses registered in B.C. providing virtual care services to clients located outside B.C. are responsible for contacting the relevant nurse regulatory body in the jurisdiction (province, territory or other country) where the client is located as there may be additional requirements, limits, or conditions to consider.
Nurses registered or licenced in other jurisdictions must be registered with BCCNM to practice as a nurse or midwife in B.C., whether providing services in-person or using a virtual care method.
BCCNM recommends that nurses contact their liability insurance provider and their regulatory body.
B.C. nurses engaged in virtual care are responsible and accountable for the nursing services provided to clients. Even though the format for providing care may be different, their responsibilities in meeting BCCNM’s regulatory requirements and Standards of Practice remain unchanged. They must also follow their employer’s policies related to virtual care.
B.C. nurses working in independent practice will need to ensure the technology they will be using complies with applicable legal and professional requirements and that they understand its limitations.
Nurses can only act on a client-specific order from a regulated health professional licensed to practice in B.C. For more information, refer to
Acting with client-specific orders and
Section 7: Restricted activities that require an order in your Scope of Practice.
Use of Title practice standard
Professional Standards for Nurse Practitioners