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Practising during COVID-19

The College continues to monitor developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic and will update this page as information becomes available or changes. We acknowledge this has been a challenging time for healthcare professionals and the healthcare system. The safety of the public, including kinesiologists, remains our top priority. We appreciate your patience as we monitor and interpret guidance and, most importantly, your unwavering commitment to providing safe care to your patients/clients.

Current situation

For the latest information on restrictions in place in Ontario, view the Ontario Government’s COVID-19 web page.

See our FAQs, below, for advice on practising during current COVID-19 health measures.

Guidance for practising during COVID-19

Kinesiologists and their employers must assess the risks of providing service in-person and implement appropriate infection control and prevention measures. You should also monitor the spread of COVID-19 in your community as you make decisions about providing service. You can refer to data from the Ontario GovernmentPublic Health Ontario and your local public health unit.

Kinesiologists must observe any provincial or local public health measures that may impact their ability to offer services. Kinesiologists may consider providing virtual services on an ongoing basis where in-person services may not be safe, or based on patient preferences and individual circumstances.

Guidance for providing service in-person

Guidance for virtual care

Guidance from the Ministry of Health and Chief Medical Officer of Health

Information is changing quickly, so please note that guidance may change. Check the College’s website regularly for the latest information and reach out to your local public health if you have queries related to your specific region.

If you have any practice-related questions, please email the College at practiceadvice@coko.ca.

FAQs

Kinesiologists are permitted to see patients in-person while current public health measures are in effect. However, kinesiologists must follow local and provincial public health guidelines and best practices, such as active and passive screening, use of PPE and other infection control measures, only seeing one patient at a time (or ensuring adequate physical distancing in group or small-group environments), allowing for cleaning and disinfection between patient appointments and offering virtual or other service delivery alternatives where possible, requested and appropriate.

At this time, fitness and other recreation facilities are permitted to be open in Ontario. Kinesiologists, and the operators of any facilities where kinesiologists practice, are expected to be aware of and comply with all federal, provincial and local public health directives and orders.

No, you do not need to report this information to the College. However, kinesiologists are encouraged to seek guidance from their local Public Health Unit regarding reporting.

If a patient’s response to active screening indicates that the person may have been exposed to or contracted COVID-19, they should be directed to the appropriate local or provincial public health resources and advised to follow all recommendations and precautions, which may include measures such as isolation and/or testing. If possible, the treatment appointment should not proceed and should be rescheduled or redirected to an alternative service delivery method (such as virtual or telephone). If in-person treatment is essential or urgent, the kinesiologist will follow all infection prevention and control procedures, including the use of the following PPE:

  • a fit-tested N95 respirator (or equivalent); OR, if the kinesiologist has not been fit-tested, a properly fitting surgical/procedure mask, a KN95 respirator (or equivalent) or a non-fit-tested N95 respirator (or equivalent) may be used
  • eye protection such as goggles or a face shield
  • gloves
  • gown

Note that PPE used for interactions with any patient, with or without a suspected, probable or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, should be safely removed and disposed of (or cleaned and disinfected, if permissible) once the treatment/appointment is complete.

At this time, unregulated physical activity professionals (such as personal trainers who are not kinesiologists) are permitted to open their facilities and/or see clients in-person provided that they follow all public health measures to prevent and control the spread of disease.

At this time, professional and elite amateur athletes may continue safe practise and competition. However, registered kinesiologists should always consider the risks and benefits of in-person services and be prepared to offer alternatives to reduce the risk of COVID-19 infection and spread. Appropriate infection prevention and control measures should be observed to protect the participants and coaching/support/professional staff. Suspected, probably and confirmed cases of COVID-19 (or any other infectious disease) should be managed and treated by the appopriate health care professionals and in line with established public health guidelines and best practices.