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Health and Public Safety Practicum Requirements

Plan ahead❗️ 

You are required to complete several health, confidentiality and consent forms before starting your program. All completed and signed paperwork is due immediately upon receipt of the Program Practicum Readiness Package.

Important dates and deadlines

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

Practicum Requirements

Step one: Pre-practicum requirements

Practicum readiness requirements are specific health and non-health-related documents that are necessary for the Work Integrated Learning (WIL) Placement (Practicum). These documents ensure you meet your placement requirements, and it is safe for you to work in their setting.

You will receive an email communication “Program and Practicum Readiness Package” 3 months before the start of your program. This email will contain all the information and the deadlines you need to successfully prepare your practicum readiness requirements.

If you haven’t received this email by the start of your program, please reach out to the Work Integrated Learning Administrator.

SAIT has partnered with Synergy Gateway, an online platform to assist you in the successful completion of these requirements. It allows you to upload your practicum readiness documentation and have it validated online.

Please follow the deadlines for completing the practicum readiness requirements given in the “Program and Practicum Readiness Package”, as late submissions may result in your practicum being delayed or cancelled.


Start the process early!

Pre-practicum documentation

Verifying your Practicum Readiness Documentation with Synergy Gateway.

Synergy Gateway is the online platform our students use to get their Practicum Readiness Documents verified. The process is called Electronic Record Verification (ERV.) Synergy Gateway is available through a secure username and password.

Login instructions will be emailed to your SAIT email account prior to the start of your program. Once you receive your login information, make sure to create a student profile.

Preparing for your ERV:

  1. Confirm that you have received your login information from Synergy. If you cannot locate this information, please contact Synergy, and open a Helpdesk ticket.
  2. Collect all required Practicum Readiness Documents by the given deadline, listed in the “Program and Practicum Readiness Package” email communication. You will receive this email three months before the start of your program.
    • If you are unable to locate this email by the start of your program, please reach out to: practicum@sait.ca. Start the process early, as some requirements may take extended time (Immunization requirements, Police Information Check).
  3. Upload your Practicum Readiness Documents into your Synergy Account. Check the “Important Forms” and “Video Library” sections on the left side of the Dashboard, for information on how to upload your documents.
  4. Book an ERV appointment by using the Scheduler tab and get your Practicum Readiness Documents verified before the given deadline. Verifying your documents is an online process that you do not need to attend. Synergy will notify you about your ERV's result in two business days.
  5. You will need to pay a fee to get your documents verified. To avoid paying additional appointment fees, ensure all your Practicum Readiness Documents have been uploaded prior to your ERV appointment.
Electronic Records Verification (ERV) Service Fee Initial Appointment Follow up appointment
Personal Information: Certifications, Declarations, Consents, and other non-PHI requirements $27.50 $10
Personal Information: PHI, including Immunization and Vaccination requirements, and other Personal information (PI) $51 $10

Students must renew their expired certifications to continue to be eligible for practicum placement. Upon renewal, certificates must be validated with Synergy with a follow-up appointment.

Accepted documentation

Refer to the table below for your program-specific documentation requirements that will need to be validated.

  • Immunization Clearance Letter - a completed letter that has been signed and approved by SAIT Health Services Clinic.
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Certificate - most programs only accept the Basic Life Support (BLS) CPR Certificate.
  • N95 Mask Fit Testing Certificate - valid for two years from the date of issue.
  • Police Information Check - A Police Information check (PIC) is a requirement for all HPS programs, except Healthcare Leadership. Please check your program and Practicum Readiness Package for specifics.
  • Emergency First Aid Certificate

Pre-practicum documentation required per program

Program Name

Immunizations CPR Certificate N95 Mask-fit testing Police Information Check  Emergency First Aid
Advanced and Primary Care Paramedic Yes Yes Yes Yes n/a
Dental Assisting Yes Yes n/a Yes n/a
Diagnostic Medical Sonography Yes Yes Yes Yes n/a
Fitness and Wellness Management n/a Yes  n/a Yes  n/a
Health Care Leadership* n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a
Health Information Management Yes  n/a n/a Yes  n/a
Medical Laboratory Assistant Yes  n/a Yes  Yes  n/a
Medical Laboratory Technology Yes  n/a Yes  Yes  n/a
Medical Office Assistant & Unit Clerk Yes  n/a n/a Yes n/a
Medical Radiologic Technology Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  n/a
Nuclear Medicine Technology Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  n/a
Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting n/a n/a n/a Yes  n/a
Optician n/a n/a n/a Yes  n/a
Pharmacy Assistant n/a n/a n/a Yes  n/a
Rehabilitation Therapy Assistant Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  n/a
Respiratory Therapy Yes  Yes  Yes  Yes  n/a

Required for: all programs except Pharmacy Assistant, Optician, Ophthalmic and Optometric Assisting, Healthcare Leadership

Most practicum sites require students to demonstrate updated immunization status prior to attending practicum and have the right to refuse students who cannot prove they have the required immunization status.

Immunizations may take up to 6 months to be completed, so it is important to consult the SAIT Health Clinic immediately after being admitted to our programs.

Influenza immunization requirements

It is strongly recommended that students receive influenza vaccinations for their own safety and the safety of the patients with whom they work. Students who are at a practicum site where an influenza outbreak occurs and who do not have current vaccination against influenza may be removed from the practicum site until the outbreak is over.

Students will need to upload proof of any influenza vaccinations to their Verified by Synergy Gateway portal; however, due to the seasonal availability of the vaccine, proof is not required to have your other requirements verified. Once an influenza vaccination is obtained, the proof of vaccination can be uploaded to Synergy at no extra cost.

Covid-19 immunization requirements

It is strongly recommended that students receive COVID-19 vaccinations and any boosters available to them for their own safety and the safety of the patients with whom they work.

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.

Please consult with a SAIT Health Clinic nurse for further information.

2. Book a consultation with the SAIT Health Clinic

The student immunization process begins with a telephone consultation with the SAIT Health Clinic nurse to review the student’s immunization records and to discuss any further required immunizations for that student’s specific HPS Program.

The SAIT Health Services team will review the student’s immunization records and medical history. An individual plan will be provided to students with outstanding immunizations to ensure that they are cleared to attend their practicum.

Book an appointment

SAIT Health Services Clinic
Monday – Friday (excluding holidays) from 8 am – 4:30 pm
NR41, Senator Burns Building - 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.

3. Prepare for your phone consultation appointment

Prepare for your phone consultation appointment by:

At the end of your consultation appointment, the nurse will provide you with a go-forward plan and next steps.

4. Complete the steps to meet any outstanding immunization requirements 

  • If the go-forward plan from the SAIT Health Clinic nurse requires you to obtain further vaccinations, you will be advised of which vaccines or boosters you need as well as any associated administrative costs for receiving them.
  • Before proceeding with your immunization plan, you will need to:
  • SAIT Health Clinic immunization administration costs are determined as follows:
    • An initial $85 charge to review the vaccines and medical history during the telephone consultation.
    • Immunization fee of $30 per appointment.
  • Additional immunization fee of $5 per vaccine for any vaccine administered the same day.Payment may be made to the SAIT Health Clinic 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 on their behalf; provided that the cardholder is present for verification purposes.
    • Receipts will be emailed to the student following payment processing.

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

4. Obtain a clearance letter from SAIT Health Services 

  • Once the SAIT Health Clinic nurse determines that you have met the immunization requirements for your program, they will provide you with a Clearance Letter.
  • This letter must be uploaded to your Verified by Synergy Gateway account as part of your pre-practicum requirements. Students must be cleared for practicum before they can attend their practicum courses.

Required for: All programs - no exemptions

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 that might impact your ability to complete the program.

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)

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 arranged for students to complete at the SAIT campus with program staff prior to practicum, as per Alberta’s Occupational Health and Safety Code 2009. Testing is done to determine which make and model of an N95 respiratory mask should be used by an individual.

What the N95 mask fit test will determine:

  • Is the seal tight enough so that the person is breathing only air which has been filtered?
  • Does the mask fit well for the face shape?
  • Does any facial hair interfere with the seal?
  • Have there been any significant changes to face shape in the past two years which may require another fit test to be done? (e.g. Weight gain/loss, the growth of facial hair, dental surgery, or facial scarring).

Failure to complete an N95 mask fit test may result in a restricted practicum and/or limited employment.

Mandatory for: All HPS programs (except Healthcare Leadership)

According to the Protection for Persons in Care Act, our practicum sites require Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) students to provide proof of a clear Criminal Record, that is valid for the entire length of their Program.

Depending on your program, you will need to apply for a Police Information Check (PIC), or a Police Information Check with Vulnerable Sector Search (PIC with VSS). Students in the Health Care Leadership Program do not need to obtain a Police Information Check.

  1. Read the PIC information sheet for detailed information on the requirements for a Police Information Check for your Program.
  2. Apply for a Police Information Check at your place of residence. You can apply in-person at any local Police Station / RCMP Detachment or online if this service is available. Calgary Residents can apply online with Calgary Police Services.
  3. You are going to receive an “Unpaid Practicum Letter” and detailed instructions on the application process from the WIL Administrator in the PRACTICUM READINESS REQUIREMENTS email 3 months before the deadline to be ready for Practicum.

Your Police Information Check must be dated as outlined in your Practicum Readiness Package. Failure to complete this process may lead to ineligibility for practicums.

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 statuses. 

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.

Health and Public Safety programs will organize one work integrated learning placement (practicum/clinical placement) for a student. Should the student decline the practicum placement, for any reason other than a protected ground, or should the placement be withdrawn from the student due to safety or behavioural concerns, the program will not support placement of the student in a second work integrated learning opportunity.

Step three: review other program requirements

For specific program requirements, navigate to your program page 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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