Physiotherapy interns protest cancellation of licensing exam for third time
EDMONTON -- A group of physiotherapy interns held up signs and shouted in protest in downtown Edmonton Wednesday afternoon after their licensing exam was cancelled.
Once again they’ve been denied the chance to become fully licensed physiotherapists.
"We’ve been graduated for over a year now, many of us longer. And for the third time this weekend our licensing exam that we've been waiting for a year has been cancelled," expressed physiotherapy intern Hailey Sachs.
They are part of 2,800 other physiotherapy interns across Canada that were denied the chance to have their licensing exams due to the physical nature of the test and COVID-19 restrictions.
There was an attempt to have virtual exams that would follow health guidelines, but those have been cancelled as well.
"I feel really powerless. Just in that, you know, we've been trying to get this forward for a year now, and we've just had no success and no progress," said Sachs.
The interns say they’re stuck in limbo, ineligible for the full pay that a licensed physiotherapist would receive, and banned from doing certain procedures or techniques.
"I don't think we have a clear reason, they've given us a number of excuses at this point, whether it's because of the pandemic or because of technical issues with the exam, I think at this point we're kind of done listening to excuses," Sachs explained.
The Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators are responsible for administering the test and have offered to issue a refund to cover the cost of therapeutic counselling, but are still planning to make a fourth attempt at having an exam.
At this point all the physiotherapy interns are hoping to have suspension of the exam as a requirement to get their licences.