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Health and Public Safety Program Orientation Requirements

Important dates and deadlines

Find important dates applicable to all students, including your transcript and tuition payments deadlines on our Important Dates page.

Important Dates

Plan ahead

You are required to complete several health, confidentiality and consent forms before starting your program. All completed and signed paperwork is needed on orientation day. 

Ensure you complete all three steps below ahead of orientation. 

Step one: Pre-practicum requirements 

Pre-practicum requirements are specific health and non-health related documents necessary for clinical and/or field placement to ensure it is safe for students to work in their setting. Ensuring you meet your placement requirements is mandatory for you to proceed in your chosen program.

SAIT has partnered with Verified by Synergy Gateway to provide you with services to assist you in the successful completion these requirements. The introduction of Electronic Student Permit Checking (ESPC) through Verified by Synergy Gateway allows you to digitally upload the documentation of your program and practicum requirements that are listed below in order to have them validated from the comfort of your home.

NOTE: It is imperative that you follow the completion deadline dates provided to you by the School of Health and Public Safety’s Student Liaison in the email communication with the subject line: “Program Readiness and ESPC Checklist” in order to avoid failed ESPC appointments or multiple appointment fees.

If you have not received, or have deleted the “Program Readiness and ESPC Checklist” communication, then please contact the Student Liaison at hps.info@sait.ca as many of these items are time-sensitive and require weeks, and sometimes months to complete.

Start the process early!

Electronic Student Permit Checking (ESPC) Process

Access to Verified by Synergy Gateway

Verified by Synergy Gateway is available through a secure username and password. Login instructions will be emailed to your SAIT email account approximately 30 days prior to the start of your program. Once you receive your login instructions, you will need to create a student profile.

Contact www.synergyhelps.com for information regarding the Verified platform, uploading of documentation, ESPC, or login information or difficulties.

Preparing for your Mandatory ESPC Appointment(s)

Before you book your ESPC appointment, please ensure that you have completed the following items: 

1. Confirm that you have received login credentials for Verified by Synergy Gateway. Your student profile username and password will be emailed to your SAIT email address approximately 2 weeks prior to the start of the program. If you cannot locate this information in your general inbox, then please check your junk/spam folder. If you still are unable to locate your login credentials, please contact hps.info@sait.ca.

2. Review your program’s specific placement requirements along with due dates in one of the following ways:

  • Through the email communication sent by the Health and Public Safety Student Liaison with the subject line “Program Readiness and ESPC Checklist". If you have not received, or have deleted that email, you may contact hps.info@sait.ca for another communication to be sent to you.
  • Log into your Verified Account and select “Important Forms”. In this section, you will also find student user guides and any required forms in order to be successful in completing this process.

3. Make sure you have reviewed what your clinical placement requirements are and have planned out when and how you will be completing them. It is important to remember that some requirements may take an extended time to complete such as your Immunization requirements.

4. Once you have ensured that all requirements have been uploaded to your profile, you may book your ESPC Appointment on the Verified by Synergy Gateway platform. This notifies Verified by Synergy Gateway that your profile is ready for validation. 

5. To avoid paying additional appointment fees, ensure all of your documentation has been uploaded PRIOR to booking your ESPC appointment.  

6. You do NOT need to attend your ESPC appointment in person or online – Synergy Gateway will send you an email status two (2) business days after your ESPC appointment date and time with a status update. Make sure you plan accordingly as it does take time to validate your documents. 

You may also login into your Verified account and check the status through your dashboard.

Accepted Documentation

Refer to the table below for your program-specific documentation requirements that will need to be validated through Verified by Synergy Gateway.

The following evidence will be accepted as documentation to meet the pre-practicum requirements:

  • Immunizations: A completed immunization form or letter that has been signed and approved by SAIT’s Health Services Clinic.
  • CPR: All programs with the exception of Dental Assisting must prove completion of Basic Life Support Provider (BLS) completed by Heart and Stroke ( NO OTHER PROVIDERS WILL BE ACCEPTED). This certificate is valid for 1 year only and should be completed after July 1 to ensure it is valid for your entire placement term.
  • CPR – Dental Assisting: NOTE: For this program only, Heart & Stroke is preferred, but any CPR Level C (Healthcare Provider) will also be accepted provided it contains the following:
    • One and two-person rescuer chest compressions for adults, children and infants
    • One and two-person rescuer adult, child, and infant bag valve mask technique and rescue breathing
    • Relief of choking in adults, children and infants
    • Use of an automated external defibrillator (AED)
  • N95 Mask Fit test Certificate – Valid for 2 years from date of issue listed on certificate - Sizes must be either 8210 or 8110s - No other sizes will be accepted.
  • Police Information Clearance with Vulnerable Sector Check (PIC) –  Must be completed on or after June 1 of the year you started your program.

Expiring Document Validation

Students with certifications/requirements expiring during the placement period must renew (before expiry) and provide updated documentation Verified to continue to be eligible for placement. This will require another appointment and there will be a full-service fee charge for this appointment. 

Multiple appointments at full-service fees will be required to update any expiring documentation. If you have more than one document expiring at any given time, we suggest you update them all together in one additional appointment to avoid further charges. Expired documents will negatively impact your clinical placement.

  • It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that their documents are valid throughout all of your clinical placements.
  • You will be notified of any upcoming expirations for documents on your profile page for Verified by Synergy Gateway. You will also receive notifications via email to your SAIT email.

Pre-Practicum Documentation Required for Validation through Verified by Synergy Gateway 

Program Name Immunizations Police Information Clearance with Vulnerable Sector Check (PIC) N95 Mask-fit testing Heart & Stroke BLS Provider CPR
Advanced Care Paramedic YES YES YES YES
Dental Assisting YES YES YES YES – See evidence list for exceptions
Diagnostic Medical Sonography YES YES YES YES
Health Information Management YES YES NO YES
Medical Device Reprocessing Technician YES YES NO NO
Medical Laboratory Assistant YES YES YES NO
Medical Laboratory Technology YES YES YES NO
Medical Office Assistant & Unit Clerk YES YES NO NO
Medical Radiologic Technology YES YES YES YES
Nuclear Medicine Technology YES YES YES YES
Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting NO NO NO NO
Optician  NO NO NO NO
Pharmacy Assistant NO YES NO NO
Primary Care Paramedic YES YES YES YES
Rehabilitation Therapy YES YES YES YES
Respiratory Therapy YES YES YES YES

Synergy Gateway Fees

  • Verified is a paid service and any time students are updating documents there are fees associated.
  • To avoid booking and paying for multiple appointments throughout the year we strongly suggest you gather all of your requirements at one time so that they might be valid for multiple placements if possible. 
Synergy Service Fee
Electronic Student Permit Checking (ESPC)  $49.50 + HST
ESPC Follow up Appointment (if you are missing documents)  $22.60 + HST

Late Cancel Fee (less than 24 hours before appointment) 

$22.60 + HST

Late Reschedule Fee(less than 24 hours before appointment) 

$22.60 + HST
No Show Fee  $49.50 + HST

*NEW* COVID-19 Immunization Requirements

Important Note: Please review SAIT’s Covid-19 information and updates for current SAIT information. All SAIT community members should review this webpage regularly to ensure awareness of the most up to date information provided by the institute.

As a result of the evolving nature of the Covid-19 pandemic, many clinical partners are requiring staff and students to be fully vaccinated for Covid-19 prior to entry into their clinical facilities. As a result, proof of Covid-19 vaccinations (evidence of first dose and second dose) is required as part of the student immunization record which must be verified in advance of participation in a clinical practicum course or experience. This is a requirement for all program’s except:

  • Nutrition for Healthy Lifestyles
  • Healthcare Leadership

When Covid-19 vaccinated, you will receive (or have received) a record of your immunization from the Covid-19 vaccination appointment OR you are able to access your Covid-19 immunization record through the Alberta MyHealth Records portal. Keep these records (evidence of first dose and second dose) with you at all times when attending your practicum.

Pharmacy Assistant, Optician and Ophthalmic and Optometric Assistant students should take the following steps:

Step one: Please provide copies of your Covid-19 vaccination records (evidence of first dose and second dose) to the SAIT Health Clinic using one of the following methods exactly as outlined:

  • Fax a copy of your Covid-19 vaccine record to 403.284.8631 along with;
  • your full name,
  • year of study,
  • the program with which you are associated,
  • vaccine producer name and
  • which dose of vaccine you have received (dose #1, dose #2 or booster).
  • Please ensure the dates of receiving Covid-19 vaccines are legible on your documents

Step two: If the above method is not available to you, then you may email a copy of your Covid-19 vaccine, along with the details listed above to health.services@sait.ca. Email is not a secure method of sharing personal health information; therefore, if you use this method, then you need to be aware that there are risks to your personal health information.

For all other year one students please read the information below carefully.

If you have not had your consultation with the SAIT Health Clinic, please follow the process outlined under the “Immunization” accordion dropdown. Please include evidence of Covid-19 vaccinations through the consultation and appointment process.

If you have an appointment booked or will be scheduling an appointment to complete as part of the immunization process with the SAIT Health Clinic please bring proof of Covid-19 vaccination with you to the appointment.

If you have fully completed your immunization appointments with the SAIT Health Clinic without having provided evidence to the SAIT Health Clinic please provide records of your Covid-19 immunization to the SAIT Health Clinic following the process outlined here:

Option A: Please provide copies of your Covid-19 vaccination records (evidence of first dose and second dose) to the SAIT Health Clinic using one of the following methods exactly as outlined:

  • Fax a copy of your Covid-19 vaccine record to 403.284.8631 along with;
  • your full name,
  • year of study,
  • the program with which you are associated,
  • vaccine producer name and
  • which dose of vaccine you have received (dose #1, dose #2 or booster).
  • Please ensure the dates of receiving Covid-19 vaccines are legible on your documents

*Please ensure the dates of receiving Covid-19 vaccines are legible on your documents

Option B: If the above method is not available to you, then you may email a copy of your Covid-19 vaccine, along with the details listed above to health.services@sait.ca. Email is not a secure method of sharing personal health information; therefore, if you use this method, then you need to be aware that there are risks to your personal health information.

All students should load their Covid-19 vaccination records to their Electronic Student Permit Checking (ESPC) evidence. Please review the Covid-19 vaccination update guide (Site feedback – could you link the green text to the attached document). This is a requirement for all program’s except the following which do not use the ESPC process.

  • Pharmacy Assistant
  • Nutrition for Healthy Lifestyles
  • Optician
  • Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting
  • Nutrition for Healthy Lifestyles

Covid-19 vaccine exemption accommodation for students

Students can request vaccine exemption accommodations, based on Human Rights Act Alberta protected ground, through the following channels:

Medical

Alberta Health Services has released the documentation regarding medical exemptions to mandatory vaccination.

As stated in the document, almost all Albertans can receive the COVID-19 vaccine and should. If individuals have specific questions about their eligibility for the vaccine, they should speak with their family doctor or call HealthLink.

There are no medical conditions that are universally identified as absolute medical exemption for initial COVID-19 vaccination although some conditions should be reviewed by a specialist before decisions are made.

There may be a small number of persons with medical exemptions assigned after a formal assessment process or for whom deferral of a second dose or use of an alternate vaccine (anaphylaxis to COVID-19 vaccine, mRNA associated myo/pericarditis) is currently recommended. In such cases, a referral for appropriate specialist assessment of some conditions may be required.

We ask that you please consult with the HealthLink or your physician/physician specialist regarding the Alberta Health Services medical exemptions guidelines prior to requesting exemption through SAIT processes.

For requests for accommodations for medical protected grounds please contact Accessibility Services with “Vaccine Exemption” in the subject line accompanied by documentation from a medical professional (physician/specialist physician)

Religious

For requests for accommodations for religious protected grounds, please see the Interfaith Centre.

A student’s accommodation request will be reviewed through SAIT departments. Please share the outcome of the accommodation request with your academic chair who will direct you what to do with the evidence.

Immunizations

Required for all programs except:

  • Pharmacy Assistant
  • Nutrition for Healthy Lifestyles
  • Optician
  • Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting
  • Healthcare Leadership

Important Note to Students Regarding COVID-19 Vaccinations:

It is important to note, that if you have received or will receive a Covid-19 vaccine, there may be an impact to when you are able to receive other healthcare immunizations. There is a period of 14-days prior to the Covid-19 vaccination in which NO other vaccine administration can occur and NO vaccine administration should occur for at least 28 days after receiving COVID vaccine.

Most practicum sites require students to demonstrate updated immunization status prior to attending practicum. The receiving practicum site has the right to refuse students who cannot prove they have met all the required immunizations. Upon being accepted into a health program at SAIT, students must complete the immunization clearance forms and processes.

Immunizations may take up to 6 months of time to complete, so it is important to start this process early.

Steps to Complete your Immunizations:

Read the Immunizations Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document.

1. Gather your immunization records

Consider all the immunizations you have had from birth to adulthood. You may consult with your family/parents, physician or public health unit to gain this evidence.

2. Book a consultation with the SAIT Health Clinic

Student immunization process begins by telephone consultation with the SAIT Health Clinic Nurse. This phone consultation appointment is to review a student’s previous immunization records, and to discuss which immunizations are required for that student’s specific HPS Program.

The SAIT Health Services team of knowledgeable Healthcare providers will review the student’s immunization records as well as the student’s medical history, and will develop a plan to ensure that the student is cleared to go on practicum.

Book an appointment:

SAIT Health Services Clinic
403.284.8666.
Monday – Friday (excluding holidays) from 8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Senator Burns Building NR41
*Please access the building from outside in the NE corner closest to 10th Street.

The 30-minute appointment will be booked for approximately 7-10 business days from the initial call to allow a student to collect and submit all necessary documents in preparation for the appointment.

Read the preparing for your SAIT Health Services immunization consultation document.

Read, complete and submit to the SAIT Health Clinic – SAIT Health Services medical history and vaccination consent form

3. Complete the steps to meet the program immunization requirements as outlined in your immunization telephone consultation.

Read the next steps after the immunizations phone consultation document.

Read and have a medical professional complete and sign the vaccine list for administration outside of SAIT Clinic document if you will not be using SAIT Health Services to complete your vaccinations.

4. Obtain a clearance letter from SAIT Health Services for submission as part of your Electronic Student Permit Checking requirements.

Fees Associated with Immunizations

Most vaccines are provided free-of-charge through Alberta Health Services; however, there are fees associated with the administration of those vaccines which are not covered. SAIT Health Services will advise you of the required vaccines, and the administrative costs for any required vaccines at your initial telephone consultation. Any additional charges will be collected at the time of the telephone consult, or at the time when any additional vaccine is given. Costs are determined as follows:

  • An initial $75 charge to review the vaccines and medical history during the telephone consultation.
  • Immunization fee of $25 per appointment.
    • Additional immunizations fee of $5 per vaccine for any vaccine administered the same day.

Payment Methods

All fees are payable at the time of the services rendered. Payment may be made using one of the following methods:

  • VISA
  • MasterCard
  • Pre-loaded VISA or MasterCard gift credit card loaded with enough funds to cover the appointment costs, and any associated activation fees (i.e. $75.00 + Activation fee to load card).
  • Students may also have a 3 rd-party credit card holder pay in their behalf; provided that the cardholder is present for verification purposes.
  • Receipts will be emailed to the student following payment processing.

Note: Debit card payment cannot be processed over the phone.

Health and wellness status

Required for: All programs - no exceptions 

The healthcare field has a strong focus on health, wellness and fitness to practice due to the demanding nature of the work and Occupational Health and Safety requirements.

If you have a physical, emotional, or medical condition or disability that might impact you in a practicum or clinical setting, it is strongly advised to discuss your concern with the program chair and/or Accessibility Services as soon as possible once you have been accepted and prior to confirming a seat into the program.

  1. Read the health and wellness guidance document.
  2. Contact your Academic Chair and/or SAIT Accessibility Services if you have a concern which might impact your ability to complete the program.

Police Information Check including Vulnerable Sector Check

Required for all programs except:

  • Nutrition for Healthy Lifestyles
  • Optician
  • Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting
  • Healthcare Leadership

According to the Protection for Persons in Care Act, our practical sites require students to obtain a Police Information Check (PIC) including Vulnerable Sector Check (VSC), prior to starting practicum.

    1. Read the PIC information sheet.
    2. Obtain a letter for unpaid practicum by completing the  required online forms.
    3. For PICs from Calgary Police Services, you need to use the “ PIC for Non-Registered Agencies (Agency Not Listed)" application process. For all other jurisdictions, please contact your local police or RCMP authority to obtain instructions on how to order a hard copy as each jurisdiction will do this differently. 
    4. Once you receive your hard copy PIC, review it to ensure that it is accurate and does not contain any statement such as: “ We recommend that a search be completed where the applicant previously resided”. If this or a similar statement exists, then you are obligated to make every reasonable effort to obtain a supplementary PIC from your previous jurisdiction.
    5. If your PIC is clear of convictions and does not contain a statement such as the one noted in step #4, then upload it to Verified by Synergy Gateway for validation through your student profile.

The PIC must be dated no earlier than 90 days prior to your program orientation day. Failure to complete this process may lead to ineligibility for practicums.

N95 Respiratory Mask Fitting

Required for: Advanced Care Paramedic, Primary Care Paramedic, Medical Laboratory Assistant,  Medical Laboratory Technology, Rehabilitation Therapy Assistant, Respiratory Therapy, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Nuclear Medicine Technology and Medical Radiologic Technology. 

Fit testing is done to determine which make and model of N95 respiratory mask should be used by an individual. In compliance with Alberta's Occupational Health and Safety Code 2009, students are fit-tested for respiratory masks prior to their practica. Occupational Health and Safety Bulletin, Respiratory Protective Equipment: An Employer's Guide states the effectiveness of the respiratory protective equipment depends on an effective face piece seal to the skin of the face.

The mask must be tight enough so that the person is breathing only air which has been filtered. The seal is dependent on facial differences (shape or size) or facial hair. Facial hair must be removed where the mask contacts the face for the test. Failure to adequately fit an N95 mask may result in a restricted practicum and\or limited employment. Additionally, a student may need to be tested again in two years or if there are changes to the face, which impact the ability of the respirator to form an effective seal (e.g. Weight gain/loss, the growth of facial hair, dental surgery, or facial scarring).

Heart and Stroke Foundation BLS Provider CPR

Required for: Advanced Care Paramedic, Primary Care Paramedic, Dental Assisting, Rehabilitation Therapy Assistant, Respiratory Therapy, Diagnostic Medical Sonography, Nuclear Medicine Technology and Medical Radiologic Technology. 

Current Heart and Stroke Foundation BLS Provider CPR must be valid for the duration of your practicum. To find a Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada BLS Provider course in your area. contact 1.877.473.0333 or find a course on www.heartandstroke.ca.

Please note, with the exception of the Dental Assisting program, only the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada BLS Provider CPR certification will be accepted.

Dental Assisting: For this program only, Heart & Stroke is preferred, but any Healthcare Provider CPR (Level C) will also be accepted provided it contains the following:

  • One and two-person rescuer chest compressions for adults, children and infants
  • One and two-person rescuer adult, child, and infant bag valve mask technique and rescue breathing
  • Relief of choking in adults, children and infants
  • Use of an automated external defibrillator (AED)

Step two: Prepare for orientation

Read the following resources that apply to all Health and Public Safety programs.

During the program, you may be expected to serve as a volunteer patient and have learning exercises performed on you by an instructor or other students. As a student and in the working world you will be required to work with individuals of all genders, sexual orientations, cultures, religions, and economic status. 

You may encounter infectious diseases through contact with patients, supplies, equipment, and biological specimens. To ensure your protection and the protection of others, you will be expected to practice universal precautions.

Practicum placement agreements

A legal contract must cover the School of Health and Public Safety students who are participating in a clinical practicum rotation. The following two examples of contracts are for your reference and do not need to be printed or signed.

Step three: review other program requirements

Select your program below to see your orientation date, any additional supplies you may need, required or recommended preparation courses and who to contact if you have questions.

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