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Under the BC Safety Standards Act, all electrical devices including medical devices must be certified for safe use. Devices that have been tested and received approval from certifying agencies will have an attached certification mark. Examples include CSA (Canadian Standards Association) and UL (Underwriters Laboratories). Not all certification marks are approved in BC. Technical Safety BC provides an updated list of approved marks.

Certification agencies inspect electrical device designs for safety features such as double insulation, sufficient gauge wiring, redundant interlocks, and other elements that ensure the end user can safely use the device.

Battery-powered devices do not require an electrical certification mark, but the associated charger must be certified.

If you have an electrical device without certification, Intertek Canada in Coquitlam can inspect the device and provide certification for a fee.

Medical devices

Medical devices range from implantable inert items such as components for joint replacement to implantable electrical devices such as pacemakers to external electrical devices and diagnostic equipment. Health Canada licenses all medical devices intended for use on human subjects in Canada. To determine whether a medical device is licensed for use in Canada, please refer to the Health Canada searchable database of licensed medical devices.

The Medical Device Regulation governs the investigational testing of medical devices in Canada. An Investigational Testing Authorization (ITA) might be required to use the medical device in research or clinical trials. Refer to the guidance from Health Canada to determine if an ITA is required (Appendix 3) and for the guideline to submit an ITA application.

EHS does not approve the use of medical devices but, if requested by a PI, EHS can provide a letter to confirm if a medical device is licensed by Health Canada. Note that licensing as a medical device does not necessarily include approved electrical certification. EHS will also confirm if the device (licensed or unlicensed) meets the requirements for electrical certification.