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Renewal

Submitting Your Vulnerable Sector Check

The form for submitting your VSC is now available in the Registrant Portal. If you have a 2021 - 2024 reporting period, you must obtain and submit your VSC by October 31, 2024. We encourage you to obtain and submit your Vulnerable Sector Check as soon as possible to ensure it can be processed by the Renewal deadline. If you are required to submit a VSC this year, you will see the green status bar and a box that reads, "You are required to submit a Vulnerable Sector Check" in the VSC tab.

To submit your VSC, click the "Vulnerable Sector Check" link at the bottom of the Links table on the right-hand side of any page in the Portal. If your local police service or RCMP detachment requires a letter in order to complete a VSC, please provide them with this document: ACDH Vulnerable Sector Check Letter

If you are not in the final year of your reporting period, you will see a yellow box that reads, "You are not required to submit a Vulnerable Sector Check at this time," in the VSC tab. You may also see a "Vulnerable Sector Check" form link in the Links list in the Registrant Portal. This form is currently available to all registrants, regardless of reporting period. If you do not have a 2021-2024 reporting period, you are not required to obtain a VSC, and the form will not allow you to submit one to the College.

Read FAQs and Troubleshooting at the bottom of this page.

Click here for step-by-step instructions in the Registrant Portal How-To Guide.

Click here to read the full Registration and Practice Permit Renewal policy.

The Annual Renewal period for 2024 will open in early September 2024. The deadline to renew is October 31, 2024.

Registration and Practice Permit Renewal Policy

The Registration and Practice Permit Renewal Policy has been approved by Council and is now in effect.

The Policy consolidates four existing College policies into one larger policy comprised of four requirements that are part of a complete application for registration or renewal. The four requirements outlined in the Policy are:

  • Vulnerable Sector Check (VSC)
  • Practice Hours
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)
  • Professional Liability Insurance (PLI)

Ensure that you are aware of all renewal requirements for registrants on the General Register. Read the full policy linked above for details of all requirements. about the vulnerable sector check requirement is below.

Vulnerable Sector Check

All registrants are required to obtain and submit a Vulnerable Sector Check (VSC) to the College every three years, in the final year of their reporting period. Criminal Record Checks will not be accepted.

Registrants with a 2021 - 2024 reporting period are required to obtain and submit a VSC document to the College by the Renewal deadline of October 31, 2024. The VSC document must have been issued between November 1, 2023 and October 31, 2024 (the final year of your reporting period).

Registrants in other reporting periods will be required to obtain and submit a VSC document in subsequent years.

Reporting Period

VSC Acquisition Time Frame

VSC Submission Deadline

2021 - 2024

Between November 1, 2023 and October 1, 2024

October 31, 2024

2022 -2025

Between November 1, 2024 and October 1, 2025

October 31, 2025

2023 - 2026

Between November 1, 2025 and October 1, 2026

October 31, 2026

2024 -2027

Between November 1, 2026 and October 1, 2027

October 31, 2027

The College encourages registrants with a 2021 - 2024 reporting period to obtain their Vulnerable Sector Check as soon as possible. It may take weeks or months to receive your VSC after requesting it from your local police service.

If your local police service or RCMP detachment requires a letter in order to complete a VSC, please provide them with this document: ACDH Vulnerable Sector Check Letter

The VSC must be submitted in the Registrant Portal. Please do not email, mail, or fax your VSC to the College. The College anticipates that the online form to submit a VSC document will be ready by the end of February. It is recommended that you submit your VSC document to the College prior to the start of the renewal period.

Your Vulnerable Sector Check must be:

  • Issued within Canada
  • Clear and legible
  • Not password-protected

Vulnerable Sector Check FAQs

Your VSC must be obtained from the police service or RCMP detachment in the jurisdiction in which you reside. A VSC can only be obtained from a police service or RCMP detachment and cannot be obtained by a third party provider of criminal record checks.

Some law enforcement agencies may provide online forms to request a VSC, but others may require you to attend in person. Check with your local detachment in advance to determine how to apply for a VSC, the cost, and any additional requirements (e.g., identification, letter).

If your local police service or RCMP detachment requires a letter in order to complete a VSC, please provide them with this document: ACDH Vulnerable Sector Check Letter

Registrants residing outside of Alberta but within Canada can request a VSC from their local police service or RCMP detachment.

The College will not accept any form of criminal record check from international police services or other international record providers. If you are currently outside of Canada, contact the police service or RCMP detachment that serves the Canadian jurisdiction you were most recently residing in.

The online form to submit your VSC to the College is expected to be available in the Registrant Portal by the end of February. The College will inform registrants when this form is available.

Do not email, fax, or mail your VSC to the College. 

A vulnerable sector check is a type of criminal record check. According to the Edmonton Police Service, “A Vulnerable Sector Check involves a search of the automated criminal records (pardoned sex offender) retrieval system maintained by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) to identify the existence of sex offences for which a record suspension or pardon exists.”

Section 28(1)(h) of the Health Professions Act allows Colleges to require criminal record checks for registration and practice permit renewal. Because dental hygienists in Alberta routinely provide services to seniors, children, or other vulnerable persons, and that the College's primary responsibility is public safety in all practice settings, the type of criminal record check required is a vulnerable sector check.

Criminal record checks that do not include a vulnerable sector check will not be accepted.

The processing time for a vulnerable check may take anywhere from seven days to several months. The College encourages you to obtain and submit your VSC as early as possible in the final year of your reporting period.

Fees for a vulnerable sector check are determined and collected by the police service or RCMP detachment providing them. Check with the police service or RCMP detachment in your region to confirm the applicable fees.

Registrants are responsible for the cost of obtaining their VSC.

The policy states that registrants must obtain and submit a VSC that is issued within the final year of their 3-year Continuing Competence Program reporting period. Registrants with a 2021 – 2024 reporting period must provide a VSC that was issued between November 1, 2023 and October 31, 2024.

College staff will review each submitted VSC to verify the document. If your VSC contains positive records or findings (e.g., criminal charges), the College will assess those findings on a case-by-case basis and may request additional information.

Vulnerable Sector Check Troubleshooting

The VSC document you upload must have all of the following: 

  • Your full name and birthdate. 
  • A statement that indicates that a Vulnerable Sector Check was completed. 
  • An original signature, a watermark, or other feature which will confirm that it is a true document. 
  • An issue date between November 1, 2023 and October 31, 2024. 

If additional information or documentation is required after your submission is reviewed by College staff, you will be contacted by email. 

Yes. If an incomplete document is uploaded, College staff will pass your submission back to you to upload the complete document. Upload all the pages of your VSC document in one file (e.g., PDF). 

Expand Image
Examples of submitted VSC documents. The issue dates are highlighted in yellow. Click to see larger images.

In most cases, the issue date will be at the bottom of the form or letter, next to the name or signature of the person who completed the check. However, checks from the Calgary Police Service have the issue date at the top of the letter. 

 

The College will not accept password-protected documents. If you are unable to remove the password from the original document, please screenshot or scan the original document and upload it to the form. Make sure you screenshot or scan the entire document, including all pages and any signatures and dates. Upload these screenshots as part of one document. Submissions with incomplete documents will be passed back for you to upload the complete document. 

College staff will review your document and if necessary, reach out to you to provide the original, or the issuing agency to verify the document. 

Non-Practicing Register Update

Based on a careful review of the changes to the Health Professions Act as a result of Bill 46, the ACDH Council determined that the Non-Practicing Register does not make a clear contribution to public protection, nor does it provide advantages for members who transfer from the Non-Practicing Register to the General Register compared to members who cancel their registration and subsequently reinstate on the General Register.

Therefore, effective November 1, 2024, the College will no longer have a Non-Practicing Register. 

If you are on the Non-Practicing Register or if you're on the General Register but considering taking a break or ceasing from practicing dental hygiene in Alberta, click the button below for information about what this change means for you.

Non-Practicing Register