em Vol. 15, No. 4 — April 2015

Dialogue

Vol. 15, No. 4 — April 2015
Welcome to Dialogue, your link to the Royal College

THIS MONTH’S HEADLINES


Fellows spur the creation of Canada’s first “Epilepsy Brain Bank” focused exclusively on adult epilepsy research


“Is your physician an FRCPC?” — Metrics from our public campaign


Announcing our first graduate in an AFC (Diploma) discipline


Answering your CBD questions: The draft CBD rollout schedule


Celebrated First Nations physician wins inaugural Royal College Indigenous health award


Scholarship funds up to $1,500 for studies in specialty medical history


Members in the news


In memoriam




ADDITIONAL NEWS ITEMS


 

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Dialogue: Your link to the Royal College

Fellows spur the creation of Canada’s first “Epilepsy Brain Bank” focused exclusively on adult epilepsy research

Canada has joined the United States, Germany and other European countries in establishing a “brain bank” to study the causes of refractory epilepsy in adults, thanks to a pair of Saskatoon physicians.

“In other countries, the concept of a brain bank is more advanced,” said José Tellez-Zenteno, MD, PhD, FRCPC, a staff neurologist and founder of the Saskatchewan Epilepsy Program at the Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon, and professor in the Division of Neurology at the University of Saskatchewan.

“When we saw that there was no dedicated epilepsy brain bank for adult patients in Canada, our inspiration was to create the first one.”

Brain bank hopes to accelerate epilepsy research

Dr. Lizbeth Hernandez shows a temporal lobe sample from one of the resections.

Dr. Lizbeth Hernandez shows a temporal lobe sample from one of the resections.

Approximately 10,000 people in Saskatchewan (or one per cent of the population) have epilepsy. Nationwide that number jumps to 300,000. In about 30-40 per cent of cases, medication is ineffective for controlling the condition. This can make simple tasks like cooking or driving a challenge, since a seizure can come on with little warning putting the patient or others at risk. A portion of these patients could be potential candidates for epilepsy surgery.

Dr. Tellez-Zenteno and Farzad Moien-Afshari, MD, PhD, FRCPC, who is an assistant professor of Neurology and Pharmacology at the University of Saskatchewan, came up with the idea to create a brain bank of samples from patients of their epilepsy clinic who undergo epilepsy surgery, something that distinguishes their project from some of the bigger, central banks that pool samples from both local and international sources.

“Our interest is in trying to get the samples from living patients. These are patients with refractory epilepsy with partial onset seizures that we are investigating using different investigations, including Video-EEG telemetry, PET scans, MRI and fMRI,” they explained.

Having the results of those clinical tests on file enhances the research value of the donated tissue samples. The team hopes that these samples will advance and accelerate research on adults living with temporal lobe epilepsy, the most common type of epilepsy in adults and where medication is ineffective in about 70 per cent of cases.

Samples are sourced from consenting surgical candidates

Dr. Mark Hiken analyzes a sample from a resection to select the sample that will be used for histopathological analysis. The rest will be saved in the bank.

Dr. Mark Hiken analyzes a sample from a resection to select the sample that will be used for histopathological analysis. The rest will be saved in the bank.

Surgical interventions are an alternative for a very select group of patients who do not respond to medication and who meet certain criteria, such as a high frequency of seizures (2-3 per month) that have persisted for a minimum of 24 months.

The most common form of surgery is a brain resection procedure that is highly effective in controlling seizures by removing the part of the brain where the seizures originate — a sample usually no bigger than the size of a golf ball.

Patients of the Saskatchewan Epilepsy Program who qualify and choose surgery are made aware of the brain bank and asked to consider donating their sample for study.

On the day of the surgery of patients who provide consent, the extracted tissue is taken swiftly and directly from the operating room to the pathologist who selects his/her diagnostic sample; the rest of the sample, rather than be incinerated, is carefully frozen in liquid nitrogen and stored at -80 degrees Celsius in the brain bank, which is housed at the University of Saskatchewan.

“So far, we have had a very good response. We have five samples now; only two patients whom we approached didn’t want to donate,” said Dr. Tellez-Zenteno.

The doctors shared that the team’s goal is to collect about 10 samples per year and they are hopeful that as word of the bank and its research benefits spreads, additional patients will contribute.

“More than 90 per cent of existing epilepsy research is on non-human tissue, like rats, rabbits, mice. The possibility to use human tissue is very important because whatever you find you can extrapolate to humans, much easier than findings from a rat.”

Sophisticated research could unlock new treatment targets

The special refrigerator that is used to save the brain tissue samples.

The special refrigerator that is used to save the brain tissue samples.

This project took off thanks to seed funding from the Saskatchewan Health Research Foundation and the University of Saskatchewan, which supported the creation of the bank and establishment of an interdisciplinary Saskatchewan Epilepsy Research Initiative Team. With a handful of samples now collected, the research component of this project is ready to get underway.

“It’s possible to use proteomics, genomics, molecular biology, and immunohistochemistry to compare the tissue of epileptic patients who didn’t respond to medication with normal tissue from patients who don’t have epilepsy,” said Dr. Moien-Afshari. “We will search for the common abnormal pathways shared amongst the brain samples of patients with refractory partial seizures. We expect the abnormalities to exist in neurotransmitter receptors or ion channels. The shared abnormal pathways can be further analyzed to identify potential targets for developing new antiepileptic medications.”

The team hopes to eventually publish their findings and that their research will contribute to scholarship on the characteristics and regions of the brain that may be more prone to seizures, with an aim to inform new treatment targets and medications for patients.

For the time being, the bank is only collecting samples from adult patients in Saskatchewan but Dr. Tellez-Zenteno and Dr. Moien-Afshari do not exclude the possibility of eventually gathering a broader sampling, although they think it is more likely that more province-specific banks will be developed.

Dr.Tellez-Zenteno shared, “It’s new and we’re learning, but it’s very promising work. I think that in the future, other epilepsy centres may be interested in starting their own projects and working on their own brain banks.”


Correction: An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated in the title that the Saskatoon Epilepsy Brain Bank was the first brain bank in Canada; in actuality, it is one of the first and the first to focus exclusively on adult epilepsy research.

 

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“Is your physician an FRCPC?” — Metrics from our public campaign

“Is your physician an FRCPC?” — Metrics from our public campaign

Today’s doctors know that patients regularly search online to learn about their health problems, medications and, increasingly, doctors’ qualifications. That’s why the Royal College’s ongoing campaign educating Canadians on what the FRCPC and FRCSC designations represent, and why it matters.

Campaign reaching millions, engaged thousands

Building off of the success of our 2014 efforts, Phase 2 delivered an online and social media campaign that reached Canadians directly, while providing the best “bang for our buck.”

The metrics are in for Phase 2, and here are some for your consideration:

“Is your physician an FRCSC?” — Metrics from our public campaign
Our metrics were strong across all platforms, in particular Facebook, and the campaign reached patients throughout all regions of Canada.

Coming soon: Educating Canadians about what specialtists actually do

The health care community widely recognizes the importance of our specialists; however, many patients lack a clear sense of what many specialists actually do. The Royal College has developed three pilot videos aimed at filling this information gap – to be released later this month. Stay tuned!

 

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Announcing our first graduate in an AFC (Diploma) discipline

“First AFC (Diploma) graduate approved in Transfusion Medicine

The Areas of Focused Competence (AFC - Diploma) category of discipline recognition continues to develop. A total of 16 disciplines have now been accepted by the Committee on Specialties and earlier this year, the program marked a major milestone: the approval of the first graduate in an AFC (Diploma) discipline.

First AFC (Diploma) graduate approved in Transfusion Medicine

Transfusion Medicine was one of the first AFC (Diploma) disciplines to be approved and the first with accredited training programs. It has now added a third distinction — that of graduating the first candidate in a Royal College AFC (Diploma) discipline.

Approved AFC (Diplomas)

  1. Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Oncology
  2. Adult Cardiac Electrophysiology
  3. Adult Echocardiography
  4. Adult Hepatology
  5. Adult Interventional Cardiology
  6. Adult Thrombosis Medicine
  7. Aerospace Medicine
  8. Brachytherapy
  9. Child Maltreatment Pediatrics
  10. Clinician Educator
  11. Cytopathology
  12. Hyperbaric Medicine
  13. Solid Organ Transplantation
  14. Sport and Exercise Medicine
  15. Transfusion Medicine
  16. Trauma General Surgery

Maha Badawi, MD, FRCPC, DRCPSC, is the Royal College’s first AFC (Diploma) graduate after her training portfolio in Transfusion Medicine was approved in February, signaling her successful demonstration of the required competencies of her program from the University of British Columbia (UBC). Dr. Badawi previously completed her residency at UBC and was certified by the Royal College in Internal Medicine (2011) and Hematology (2012). She is currently an assistant professor at the King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

“Specialty training in Transfusion Medicine is critical for ensuring the health and safety of patients across all areas of medicine,” said Donald Arnold, MD, FRCPC, hematologist and chair of the Royal College AFC Committee in Transfusion Medicine, as well as director of the Transfusion Medicine Residency Program at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont.

“The discipline of Transfusion Medicine intersects medical and surgical specialties; crosses clinical and laboratory practices; centres on the wellbeing of patients and blood donors; and requires an appreciation of history, politics and health advocacy,” he added.

“This AFC training provides a unique opportunity for senior learners to master these skills with flexibility, independence and oversight. I am thrilled to see the first candidate in a Transfusion Medicine AFC program graduate, and I am certain that the program will serve as a model for Transfusion Medicine training around the world.”

Dr. Badawi, already a Royal College Fellow, has elected to maintain a Royal College Diplomate status. In doing so, she may now use the additional Royal College designation “DRCPSC” (or Diplomate of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada).

Learn more about AFC (Diplomas) on our website or contact cos@royalcollege.ca with questions.


Announcing our first graduate in an AFC (Diploma) discipline

eDiploma update: More pilot groups added

Since AFC (Diploma) disciplines are assessed by a summative portfolio, rather than by examination, the Royal College has developed an online portfolio (“eDiploma”) to facilitate the assessment of these trainees:

Pilot group feedback will continue to be used to refine the system, with plans to open its use to trainees/applicants in other approved disciplines in the near future. This initiative is also laying the groundwork for planned enhancements to MAINPORT ePortfolio as it expands its capabilities as part of the Competence by Design initiative.

 

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Answering your CBD questions: The draft CBD rollout schedule

We are committed to providing our Fellows and partners with regular information about the progress of the Competence by Design (CBD) initiative. To this end, we’ve recently launched a monthly Dialogue series to find out what information you’re interested in and to answer your CBD questions.

Here’s one of the great questions we’ve received.

Q: When will my specialty or subspecialty transition to CBD?

A: The Royal College is taking a phased approach to CBD rollout and implementation. As part of this approach, the specialty committees of Medical Oncology and Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery (Cohort 1), along with program directors, clinician educators, invited guests and the Royal College, have begun the iterative process of adopting CBD by participating in facilitated workshops.

We envision that the remaining specialties and subspecialties (divided into six cohorts) will successively begin their transition to CBD starting with a series of workshops each year until 2022. A proposed rollout schedule (which you can find below) has been developed and shared with specialty committee chairs. As CBD progresses, we will continue to communicate with each specialty and subspecialty to discuss their timing/inclusion in the proposed cohort year. Specialty committees will be contacted 6-12 months prior to their proposed cohort start date to confirm their participation.

The specialty committees of each discipline can expect to spend around two years engaging in a series of facilitated workshops, webinars and other collaborative activities to prepare for implementation. Activities will include

Teaching and learning within a competency-based model will only begin for each specialty and subspecialty once the activities above are complete. As such, Cohort 1 disciplines will begin to roll out competency-based education within CBD in 2016.

Proposed CBD Rollout Schedule

2014
(Cohort 1)
2015
(Cohort 2)
2016
(Cohort 3)
2017
(Cohort 4)
2018
(Cohort 5)
2019
(Cohort 6)
2020
(Cohort 7)
Medical Oncology Urology Neurosurgery General Surgery Orthopedic Surgery Dermatology Colorectal Surgery
Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery Anesthesiology Cardiac Surgery Plastic Surgery Vascular Surgery Ophthalmology General Surgical Oncology
  Internal Medicine Pediatrics Obstetrics and Gynecology Neuropathology Diagnostic Radiology Thoracic Surgery
  Gastroenterology Anatomical Pathology Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Neurology Medical Genetics Interventional Radiology
  Forensic Pathology General Pathology Nuclear Medicine Hematological Pathology Public Health and Preventive Medicine Palliative Medicine
  Surgical Foundations Radiation Oncology Psychiatry Hematology Pediatric Emergency Medicine Pain Medicine
    Emergency Medicine Respirology Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Gynecologic Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility Developmental Pediatrics
    Critical Care Medicine Cardiology Pediatric Surgery Maternal-Fetal Medicine Neuroradiology
    General Internal Medicine Rheumatology Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology Gynecologic Oncology Pediatric Radiology
    Nephrology Geriatric Medicine Forensic Psychiatry Infectious Diseases Occupational Medicine
      Neonatal-Perinatal Medicine Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Medical Microbiology Endocrinology and Metabolism
      Clinical Immunology and Allergy Geriatric Psychiatry Medical Biochemistry  
        Adolescent Medicine    


Phased Implementation for CBD: Proposed schedule

“Phased Implementation for CBD: Proposed schedule

Have a question about CBD? Let us know!

We’re open and listening! Send us your questions and comments about the Competence by Design (CBD) initiative, including the CanMEDS 2015 Framework, and we’ll address them in an upcoming Dialogue article.

Send your questions to cbd@royalcollege.ca.

 

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Celebrated First Nations physician wins inaugural Royal College Indigenous health award

A Mohawk Nation physician has received the inaugural Royal College Dr. Thomas Dignan Indigenous Health Award for her dedication to bridging the gap between Indigenous health values and the practice of western medicine.

Karen Hill, MD, CCFP, is a family physician who works at Juddah’s Place, a clinic she cofounded in 2013 with colleague Elva Jamieson in Ohsweken, Ont., a village on the Six Nations of the Grand River First Nation reserve near Brantford, Ont.

Juddah’s Place is a place where old meets new. It is where Dr. Hill has achieved her dream of practising medicine in a model of collaborative care that incorporates traditional Indigenous healing alongside primary care. The practice also trains family medicine residents and apprentices of traditional medicine.

“Juddah’s Place is truly a space unlike any other in Canada,” said James Makokis, MD, CCFP, who previously sat with Dr. Hill on the board of the Indigenous Physicians Association of Canada. “It is entirely self-sufficient, receives no government funding, and represents the model of health care delivery our ancestors envisioned receiving when they agreed to Treaty Six and its ‘medicine chest clause,’ which should be interpreted as meaning they can have access to the best medicines from both systems, Indigenous and western.”

Juddah is a term for grandmother used by children in the language of the Cayugas, one of the Six Nations that comprise the Iroquois Confederacy in southeastern Canada and northeastern United States.

Dr. Hill also works at McMaster University where she has been faculty lead in Aboriginal Peoples health in the Department of Family Medicine since 2007. This invaluable position allows her to advise on the integration of cultural safety and competence in the education and clinical training of residents.

“Dr. Hill’s devotion to ensuring that Indigenous Peoples can enjoy health, wellbeing and a full expression of their identity embodies the spirit of our Thomas Dignan award,” said Royal College CEO Andrew Padmos, MD, FRCPC. “Her dedication to eradicate the disparities and inequities in health outcomes and quality of care make her a source of pride for the Royal College and Canadian medicine.”

The wellbeing of Canada’s Indigenous Peoples is a top priority for the Royal College. The Dr. Thomas Dignan Indigenous Health Award was established in 2014 to recognize physicians who epitomize a zeal and devotion to the rights and pursuit of justice for Canada’s Indigenous Peoples. It distinguishes individuals like its namesake, Thomas Dignan, OOnt, MD, chair of the Royal College Indigenous Health Advisory Committee, who embrace cultural safety and understand the importance of the social determinants of health.

”Receiving this award means something very personal to me,” said Dr. Hill. “It acknowledges the value of a ‘healing approach’ to Indigenous Peoples’ health that includes traditional Indigenous knowledge and medicine practices as part of that approach.”

How to nominate for a Thomas Dignan award

The call for nominations for the 2016 Dr. Thomas Dignan Indigenous Health Award is open. Nominations should be submitted to awards@royalcollege.ca before September 11, 2015. Contact us via the same email address if you have any questions.

 

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Scholarship funds up to $1,500 for studies in specialty medical history

Scholarship funds up to $1,500 for studies in specialty medical history

Residents pursuing studies in the history of specialty medicine or postgraduate medical education in Canada are invited to apply for the Royal College’s Peter Warren Travelling Scholarship.

The scholarship funds up to $1,500 per project and encourages recipients to visit our celebrated Roddick Room library in Ottawa, Ont., and research the historical archives of the Royal College.

View the 2016 application form. Send your submissions to awards@royalcollege.ca before September 11, 2015, 4 p.m., EST. Contact us via the same email address if you have any questions.

This opportunity is open to residents in a Canadian medical school postgraduate program. Full eligibility criteria and submission details are on our website.

 

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Members in the news

Research by Gonzalo Alvarez, MD, FRCPC (Internal Medicine, Respirology) and colleagues that shows that a DNA test for tuberculosis could help speed up its diagnosis in patients in Nunavut was featured in a The Ottawa Citizen article.

Eric Benchimol, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics, Gastroenterology) contributed to a CTV News piece on inflammatory bowel disease in young immigrants.

Michael Cuisimano, MD, FRCSC (Neurosurgery) added his voice to a Global News piece about safety rankings of helmets, noting that no helmet will provide perfect protection.

Allison Dart, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics, Nephrology) was named one of Manitoba’s Future 40 finalists by CBC Manitoba.

Z. Jeff Daskalakis, MD, FRCPC (Psychiatry, Clinician Investigator Program) and his colleague published a caution in The Globe and Mail against spreading damaging stereotypes about depression, in the wake of the Germanwings tragedy.

Honorary Fellow, His Excellency the Right Honorable David Johnston, CC, CMM, COM, CD, FRCPSC, Governor General of Canada, will remain in office until September 2017, as reported by CBC News.

Paul Keith, MD, FRCPC (Internal Medicine, Clinical Immunology and Allergy) explained in a CBC News article how springtime allergies could be caused or aggravated by “snow mould.”

Joanne Liu, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics), International President of Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF), commented on the Syrian conflict in The Malaysian Insider.

The work of HIV/AIDS researcher, Julio Montaner, MD, FRCPC (Internal Medicine) was recently recognized and endorsed by The Vatican.

Patricia Parkin, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics) and Catherine Birken, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics) commented on new guidelines that oppose weight loss drugs and surgery for young children, in an Edmonton Journal article

Derek Puddester, MD, FRCPC (Psychiatry) commented on the growing concern of physician suicide in this CTV News article and Canada AM TV segment.

Andrew James Shapiro, MD, FRCSC (General Surgery) commented in the Edmonton Journal on the groundbreaking organ preservation OrganOx machine, a new transplant technology available in Edmonton.

Matthew Stanbrook, MD, FRCPC (Internal Medicine, Respirology, Clinician Investigator Program) presented an argument against banning medical tourism at this stage, in this CBC Radio Day 6 interview.

Valerie Taylor, MD, FRCPC (Psychiatry) contributed to a National Post piece on the correlation between increased rates of suicide and financial stress.

Stanley Zlotkin, MD, FRCPC (Pediatrics), who invented a unique micronutrient sprinkle for children in developing countries to prevent anemia, was profiled in The Globe and Mail.

2015 CAME Certificate of Merit Awards winners

In recognition of their commitment to medical education, the following Fellows have been awarded the Canadian Association for Medical Education’s (CAME) 2015 Certificate of Merit:

Suggestions for “Member in the news” can be emailed to communications@royalcollege.ca.

 

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In memoriam

Pierre Benjamin, MD, FRCPC, died on February 3, 2015, in Quebec at age 81. Dr. Benjamin became a Royal College Fellow in 2011, after his certification in Cardiology was recognized as a result of a decade-long process to harmonize the certification practices between the Royal College and the Collège des médecins du Québec. He received his medical degree from the State University of Haiti in 1959 and practiced for more than 30 years in both Haiti and Montreal.

Joan Canby, MD, FRCPC, died on February 25, 2015, in Hamilton, Ont., at age 78. Dr. Canby was certified by the Royal College in Pediatrics in 1967. She was the sole woman in her graduating class of 1960 from the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Manitoba. She worked for 20 years at the Chedoke-McMaster Hospital, and also previously taught at McMaster University. Read more about Dr. Canby »

Michael Xavier M. (Dave) Coughlan, MD, FRCPC, died on January 9, 2015, in Edmonton, Alta., at age 78. Dr. Coughlan was certified by the Royal College in Anesthesiology in 1968. Born in Galway, Ireland, he came to Canada in 1968. He worked as an anesthesiologist at the Royal Alexandra Hospital for more than 40 years, at one time serving as chief of the department. Read more about Dr. Coughlan »

Benvon C. Parfey (Cramer) MD, FRCPC, died on January 2, 2015, in St. John’s, N.L., at age 64. Dr. Cramer was certified by the Royal College in Diagnostic Radiology in 1984. She received her medical degree from the National University of Ireland, University College of Dublin in 1974. Earlier this year, she received the prestigious Chairman’s Award from Rugby Canada for her impactful and extensive volunteer work for advancement of the sport. Read more about Dr. Cramer »

Lawson Bruce Cronk, MDCM, FRCPC, died on January 24, 2015, in Belleville, Ont., at age 91. Dr. Cronk was certified by the Royal College in Internal Medicine in 1952. A former chief of medicine and president of the Belleville General Hospital medical staff, he was equally dedicated to education and served for many years as an assistant professor at Queen’s University. Recognized with numerous awards for his humanitarian and other efforts, Dr. Cronk was awarded a Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medical in 1978, Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012 and Royal College Regional Award for service to his community in 1996.
Read more about Dr. Cronk »

Laurent Dinh, MD, FRCPC, died on February 11, 2015, in Ottawa, Ont., at age 50. Dr. Dinh was certified by the Royal College in Nuclear Medicine in 1994. He was formerly the program director of the University of Ottawa’s Nuclear Medicine Residency Program and an assistant professor in the school’s Department of Medicine. He also contributed his talents as a past member of the Royal College’s Nuclear Medicine Examination Committee. Read more about Dr. Dinh »

Robert Roy P. Forsey, MD, FRCPC, died on January 13, 2015, in Montreal, Que., at age 99. Dr. Forsey was certified by the Royal College in Dermatology in 1947. During World War II, he served as a surgeon lieutenant in the Royal Canadian Navy. For many years following, he worked as the chief of Dermatology at the Montreal General Hospital where he is credited with having been an educator and mentor to generations of young physicians. Read more about Dr. Forsey »

Cyril Basil Frank, MD, FRCSC, died on March 5, 2015, in Calgary, Alta., at age 65. Dr. Frank was certified by the Royal College in Orthopedic Surgery in 1980. He was a renowned surgeon, researcher, educator and administrator known for his promotion of evidence-based care. At the time of his death, he was president and CEO of Alberta Innovates Health Solutions. An active Royal College volunteer, he served on the Orthopedic Surgery Test Committee (1989-2002), the Medal Award in Surgery Subcommittee (2001-2003) and the Awards Committee (2002-2010). In 2013, he was presented with a University of Alberta Alumni Honour Award for his contributions to the community and to the country. Read more about Dr. Frank »

James Alexander Low, CM, MD, FRCSC, died on February 15, 2015, in Kingston, Ont., at age 89. Dr. Low was certified by the Royal College in Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1955. He was appointed a member of the Order of Canada in 2014 for his work as founder and champion of the Museum of Health Care in Kingston. He also served on the Royal College’s History and Heritage Advisory Committee for six years (2008-2014).
Read more about Dr. Low »

John Eric Sparks Relton, MD, FRCPC, died on January 4, 2015, in North York, Ont., at age 83. Dr. Relton was certified by the Royal College in Anesthesiology in 1964. Born in Hartlepool, England, he joined the staff at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto in 1964. There, he was formerly a senior staff anesthesiologist, as well as an associate professor of Medicine at the University of Toronto. Read more about Dr. Relton »

Terry David Sosnowski, MD, FRCPC, died on March 13, 2015, in Alberta at age 67. Dr. Sosnowski was certified by the Royal College in Emergency Medicine in 1986. In a career spanning more than 40 years, he served time as Edmonton’s Emergency Medical Services (Ambulance) medical director, as Emergency Department chief at the Charles Camsell Hospital and as program director of the Emergency Medicine Residency Training Program at the University of Alberta, among many other contributions. He was awarded the Royal College’s Program Director of the Year Award in 2009. Read more about Dr. Sosnowski »

Paul Ellis Slater, MD, FRCPC, died on February 14, 2015, in London, Ont., at age 91. Dr. Slater was certified by the Royal College in Anesthesiology in 1959. He served for many years as an anesthesiologist at several hospitals in London, as well as taught as a professor of Anesthesiology at the University of Western Ontario (now, Western University). Read more about Dr. Slater »

G. Allan Taylor, MD, FRCSC, died on March 3, 2015, in Ottawa, Ont., at age 81. Dr. Taylor was certified by the Royal College in Plastic Surgery in 1967. A medical graduate of the University of Ottawa in 1962, he practiced for many years at the Ottawa Civic Hospital, contributing to the work of numerous committees. Read more about Dr. Taylor »

Elrie Clifford Tucker, MD, FRCSC, died on January 14, 2015, in Montreal, Que., at age 82. Dr. Tucker was certified by the Royal College in Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1966. Born in Trinidad, he came to Canada to attend McGill University and practiced for many years in Montreal. Dr. Tucker was a dedicated advocate for women’s health and founded the Quebec Black Medical Association to support young black medical professionals. Read more about Dr. Tucker »

Suggestions for “In memoriam” can be emailed to communications@royalcollege.ca.

 

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Find out what kept us busy in 2014

Our 2014 Annual Review is now available. One goal: Better care highlights the scope of the Royal College’s work in all areas of medical education and the Canadian health care system. If you’ve ever wondered what keeps us busy, we encourage you to take a look!


Features include

2014 Annual Review

View or download a copy of the 2014 Annual Review »

Print copies are also available to Fellows and Resident Affiliates by request. Please email communications@royalcollege.ca.

Fun fact: Our 2014 Annual Review’s mosaic cover is made up of 3,742 original images (many repeated) in approximately 7,800 hexagons!

 

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CanMEDS 2015 Series IV is now available online

CanMEDS 2015 Series IV is now available online

On March 4, the Royal College announced the completion of the CanMEDS 2015 Framework revisions, and released the final draft of the Framework (Series IV).

Following nearly two years of extensive consultations, which involved feedback from more than 1,500 stakeholders, Fellows and Royal College staff, the Framework was adopted by the Royal College Council as the competency framework for all specialists in late-February 2015 and is now available for your information and reference on the Royal College website.

As a foundational project of the Competence by Design initiative, the CanMEDS 2015 Framework will ensure that specialist trainees acquire and demonstrate the competencies they will need throughout their practice, while also providing a framework upon which to build their future learning strategies.

The final version of the Framework, along with new resources to support implementation of CanMEDS 2015, will be available for the first time in both official languages at the 2015 International Conference on Residency Education in Vancouver, B.C.

For more information, please refer to the CanMEDS 2015 website or contact canmeds@royalcollege.ca

 

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Annual Dues 2015-2016: Everything you need to know

For those who haven’t already done so, the deadline to renew your Fellowship for 2015-2016 is April 30, 2015. Dues notices were sent out in early March.

Pay your dues online or visit our annual dues web page for more information.


Receipts/confirmation of payment

Please use your 2015-2016 statement as your receipt of payment for the purposes of reimbursement or documentation that you have paid in full. Statements are emailed at the end of the month in which you paid.

Membership dues for 2015-2016

Annual membership dues were approved at the Annual Meeting of the Members on February 20, 2015.

Fellows residing and practising in Canada

C$865

Fellows residing and practising outside of Canada

C$649

Long-Term Members - Active Fellows with 40 years of membership (dues are automatically adjusted for Fellows who qualify for this category)

C$200

Retired Fellows (as per Royal College definition)

No dues


Five easy payment options:

  1. Pay your dues online using your credit card.

  2. Pay using online banking through most major financial institutions — just add the Royal College to your list of payees (Note: your Royal College ID is your account number).

  3. Call our secure payment line and pay by credit card at 1-800-668-3740 ext. 192 (toll-free) or 613-260-6192 (Ottawa region).

  4. Fax us at 613-730-8830.

  5. Send a cheque or money order payable to the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada to our mailing address.


Fee reductions

Some Fellows may qualify for a fee reduction for the 2015-2016 fiscal year.

Projected net professional income between C$30,000 and C$100,000

C$433

Projected net professional income less than C$30,000

C$200

Anticipate a temporary leave for four months or longer for family or health reasons*

C$433


To apply for a fee reduction, fill out the Request for fee reduction form online. Members must initiate requests for a fee reduction and confirm their eligibility for fee reductions each year.

*Maintenance of Certification cycles may be affected based on the duration of family or health leaves. Please see the online Maintenance of Certification Cycle Adjustment form.

Late fee starts on May 1

Please note that we will charge a late fee if payment is not received by the deadline due to the high administrative costs associated with following up on overdue accounts. Full details on the late fee can be found here.

If you have questions about annual dues, please visit our FAQ or contact our finance department at 1-800-668-3740 (toll-free), 613-730-8177 (Ottawa region) or finance@royalcollege.ca.

 

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ASPIRE program actions patient safety and quality improvement solutions

“ASPIRE program actions patient safety and quality improvement solutions

Organizations that embody a commitment to patient safety may also foster a proactive culture to identify and correct vulnerabilities in the health care system, rather than waiting to respond to adverse events. The ASPIRE program (Advancing Safety for Patients in Residency Education) aims to support this commitment by reaching out to medical educators, residents and physicians, and offering essential training on how to better teach and assess patient safety and quality improvement (QI) in their daily practice.

The Royal College and the Canadian Patient Safety Institute have offered two ASPIRE programs in the past two years, with a third planned for this June.


Next ASPIRE program being offered in French! Register before May 26, 2015

“ASPIRE program actions patient safety and quality improvement solutions

The Royal College, the Canadian Patient Safety Institute and the Collège des médecins du Québec have partnered to offer a French ASPIRE program in Montreal, Que., on June 2-5, 2015. This four-day program will be held at the Centre d’apprentissage de l’Académie CHUM and will feature a state-of-the-art simulation session and stellar faculty.

French medical educators and residents interested in teaching and assessing patient safety and quality improvement are invited to attend. Given that patient safety and QI competencies have been explicitly weaved throughout the new CanMEDS 2015 Physician Competency Framework, this program will enable participants to get a first-hand look at how these competencies can be taught and evaluated.

REGISTER by May 26, 2015 | Spaces are limited

Please contact aspire@royalcollege.ca with questions or comments.

Supporting patient safety solutions with ASPIRE, CanMEDS 2015

A few years ago, the Royal College undertook the development of a white paper series to engage Fellows to consider the strengths, weaknesses and opportunities in the current postgraduate medical education system — the Royal College’s contribution to the collaborative Future of Medical Education in Canada Postgraduate project.

This project resulted in a series of 10 papers that together are intended to inform future strategic directions for postgraduate medical education. One of those papers focused exclusively on the issue of patient safety.

Download the full white paper series as an eBook or PDF »

The authors of the patient safety white paper highlighted several possible solutions to better support patient safety in teaching and practice, several of which the ASPIRE program helps to address:

The Royal College has also made positive gains in these areas by explicitly weaving patient safety and QI competencies into the revised CanMEDS 2015 Physician Competency Framework.

In addition, the Royal College hosted a summit on patient safety last year that included more than 50 attendees from a variety of stakeholder organizations to help determine advanced ways that the Royal College can continue to support the patient safety agenda.

 

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Dialogue: Your link to the Royal College

Online registration for ICRE 2015 is now open! Top 5 reasons to attend

Register today to join more than 1,500 educators and physicians from around the world at the 2015 International Conference on Residency Education (ICRE). Held October 22-24, 2015, in Vancouver, B.C., participants will be treated to a dynamic program filled with practical events and sessions that explore the latest trends and innovations in postgraduate education and training. Enjoy more than 50 workshops, 14 innovative learning tracks, and more than 200 poster and paper presentations.

Register for ICRE online

Visit the ICRE website at www.royalcollege.ca/icre to register. Early bird rates expire September 14, 2015. Register today and save!

Social media: The key to unlocking ICRE 2015

Stay tuned to our twitter feeds, including @RC_ICRE_CIFR and @DrJFrank, as well as our YouTube channel and the ICRE blog, as we unveil all the details for this year's conference in Vancouver.


Need more convincing? Here are the top five reasons you should attend:

Online registration for ICRE 2015 is now open!
  1. Transforming Training for Modern Care: This year’s theme is Residency Rediscovered: Transforming Training for Modern Care. Attend ICRE 2015 and learn new techniques and explore innovations that can inform your teaching and assessment on both practical and theoretical levels.

  2. New eLog Summit: Held one day prior to ICRE, this unique summit will examine how the emergence of eLogs is changing residency education in an increasingly complex health care system.

  3. Radical plenary sessions: Hear powerful discussions from an international roster of speakers who will explore a new model of residency training, competency-based medical education, patient safety, and more. This year’s roster of speakers includes

  4. World launch of the CanMEDS 2015 Physician Competency Framework
  5. World launch of the CanMEDS 2015 Physician Competency Framework: The final version of the CanMEDS Physician Competency Framework will be officially unveiled in October at ICRE 2015. The launch will also include an updated edition of the CanMEDS Milestones Guide, as well as a number of additional features, such as an updated CanMEDS Diagram, a glossary, faculty support tools and more. Save the date for this exciting, not-to-be missed event!

  6. Enhance your worldwide network
  7. Enhance your worldwide network: ICRE is the world’s largest conference devoted exclusively to advancing residency education. More than 1,500 educators, program directors, residents and specialists from 29 countries attend each year. Discuss challenges, experiences and solutions with colleagues from jurisdictions worldwide.

 

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Dialogue: Your link to the Royal College

This year's Simulation Summit is taking place in the picturesque city of Banff, Alta., Canada, from November 25-26, 2015

Share your great work in simulation, or learn how to integrate simulation into your program

This year's Simulation Summit is taking place in the picturesque city of Banff, Alta., Canada, from November 25-26, 2015. There is still time for you to be a part of the program. The call for abstract and workshop proposals remains open. Submit before the deadlines for your chance to be part of this year's dynamic lineup, with the theme “Fresh Tracks: Breaking trails — from theory to practice.”

New to simulation? Consider our pre-conference Simulation Educator Training course that will take place in Calgary, Alta., from November 22-24, 2015. Find out more, below.

Registration for the 2015 Simulation Summit will open this July. Plan ahead and book your room now, to save! A room block has been reserved at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel.

Be part of the program: Submit an abstract before June 24

Attention simulation educators, researchers, CPD educators, simulation centre directors and program directors: the deadline to submit abstracts for presentation at the 2015 Simulation Summit is Wednesday, June 24, 2015.

Abstracts categories include

“This year's Simulation Summit is taking place in the picturesque city of Banff, Alta., Canada, from November 25-26, 2015

Please note that any topic related to simulation-based learning will be considered. Above all, we are seeking submissions that present rigorous and scholarly work and that advances our knowledge of simulation-based education and assessment, broadly.

For more information, please visit: Abstract submission guidelines | Submit


Last call for workshop proposals

Don't forget, workshop proposals are due on May 24, 2015.

For more information, please visit: Workshop submission guidelines | Submit


Get SET to integrate simulation into your curriculum!

This year's Simulation Summit is taking place in the picturesque city of Banff, Alta., Canada, from November 25-26, 2015

Are you looking to become a better simulation educator? The Royal College can SET you on your way with its Simulation Educator Training (SET) course, November 22-24, 2015, in Calgary, Alta.

Delivered in six modules over three days, this course covers

The course takes place in an interactive environment, which combines instruction with hands-on training in a small group setting to maximize learning!


Don’t miss out!

Registration for the SET course will open soon. Visit our simulation education training course website for more information.

 

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Dialogue: Your link to the Royal College

Residents, take note: The dates for IRLS 2015 have changed!

To better accommodate residents, this year’s International Resident Leadership Summit (IRLS) will be taking place on Friday and Saturday, October 23-24, as part of the 2015 International Conference on Residency Education (ICRE).

Residents, take note: The dates for IRLS 2015 have changed!

IRLS is a special two-day event that’s dedicated to enhancing resident leadership skills. IRLS participants and residents who attend ICRE will have the opportunity to

For more information, or to view the IRLS program-at-a-glance, please visit: royalcollege.ca/irls

Online registration for IRLS 2015 is now open!

Join colleagues from around the world at IRLS 2015. Residents of all levels are welcome! Visit the IRLS website today for complete registration information. More details about the 2015 program will be available this spring, including plenary speakers, workshops, social events and more.

Early bird rates are available! Register today and save!

 

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