Student Practice

This web page is for local provincial, national and public and private educational institutions and other agencies that are interested in placing students in an Island Health facility relevant to a student’s field of practice or study.

Island Health recognizes the importance of students and continuous learning. Our goal is to provide a broad scope of learning opportunities, in collaboration with our academic partners, for students and practitioners from all healthcare disciplines and others.

Observational / Job Shadow Experiences

Island Health has necessary processes established  for observational or job shadow experiences at Island Health facilities. At this time, we are only considering requests for job shadow or observational experiences for Grade 9 Students participating in Take Our Kids to Work Job Shadowing Program.

International Student Requests

Island Health is not able to accommodate requests for student placements from internationally based schools at this time.

Medical Student Requests

All medical students placements must go through the University of B.C. Faculty of Medicine MD Undergraduate-  Prospective Students process.

Co-op Student Requests

Please visit our Co-op Students webpage for information about Co-Op Placements. 

All Other Requests

Please refer to the following section on "Student Placement Requests".

Student Placement Requests

The educational institute, agency or other must make student placement requests:

    • At least 3 months before the requested placement date.
    • To Island Health's Professional Practice department.
      • Students and faculty are requested to NOT contact units or staff members directly about placement opportunities.


Before requesting a student placement, an Educational Affiliation Agreement (EAA) must be made between the educational institution and Island Health and signed by both parties.

Placement Request Process

  1. Island Health Contract Management emails the EAA template to the education institution to determine the appropriateness of the placement request, asking for:
    • Program overview information, course expectations and program contacts.
    • Placement type, dates and number of hours.
    • Roles and responsibilities of faculty, students and Island Health.
    • Resource materials that need to be provided to Island Health.
  2. The educational institute completes and signs the EAA and returns it to Island Health. Once Island Health signs the form, a copy is sent to the educational institute; Contract Management also keeps a copy.
  3. Professional Practice determines the capacity of the clinical area for a student placement, and may suggest an alternate area if the practicum or clinical setting requested does not have capacity.

To set up an EAA, email Island Health’s Professional Practice Student Practice co-leads: anneke.vink@viha.ca or sandra.judge@viha.ca.

Coordinating and Managing Placement Requests

Island Health uses the Health Science Placement Network (HSPnet) to coordinate and manage requests for placements.

Educational institutes in BC can find detailed information about Island Health’s pre-placement process and updates by logging into HSPnet - Click Content Services > Guidelines > View: Guidelines > Agency: Island Health > Subtopic, and select:

    • 0.0 Practice Education Guidelines Introductory
    • 1.1 Placement Process(es)

If you are not using HSPnet please contact studentpractice@viha.ca.

    • If your program is outside of BC and you meet all of the requirements above, we will arrange guest access to HSPnet for you.

Once a placement is confirmed, additional pre-placement requirements must be met. Students and faculty can learn about these on Island Health’s Student Practice Intranet Page (see how to access the Intranet for more information).