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MOC Tip of the Month

It’s hard to believe that 2018 is more than half over. That means the MOC Program reporting deadline is only five months away! Get ahead with a mid-year check: log in to your MAINPORT ePortfolio to see how many credits you’ve reported so far and how many you still need to achieve your 25-credit minimums.

Your MAINPORT dashboard shows a handy visual summary of your MOC credit balances. Log in today and verify your credit status, as a first step.

Remember: MOC has three requirements

Keep in mind that in order to successfully close your MOC cycle, you must do three things:

  1. Document at least 25 credits in all MOC sections before your cycle ends
  2. Record at least 40 credits per year
  3. Record at least 400 credits in total per cycle

Take a look at your account. How close are you?

Need more credits?

  • Start by consulting our CPD framework to see where your activities fit.
  • Looking for Section 3? Complete one of our new accredited self-assessment programs (SAPs) in collaboration with mdBriefCase (accessible at no charge from the “My eLearning” tab in MAINPORT ePortfolio). You can also point your browser to the Canadian Medical Protective Association’s website and take one of their e-learning modules. For more SAPs, check our list of Section 3 accredited learning activities by specialty.
  • Need more Section 2? The MOC Tips page also has some great self-learning ideas from Fellows who have, for example, completed a Personal Learning Project, leveraged their research process or learned with podcasts.
  • Low on Section 1? Check your Holding Area in MAINPORT ePortfolio, where administrators may have uploaded your participation at a conference. If so, all you need to do is enter your learning outcome and submit the activity to apply these credits to your account. Not sure if your conference was accredited? Check our list of Section 1 accredited learning activities by specialty.

Making a plan to meet your MOC requirements will save you time and help you avoid a last minute rush before the January 31 deadline.

Not sure where your activities fit? Looking for extra support?

Summer is also a great time to contact our Royal College Services Centre staff! Call them for assistance: 1-800-461-9598 (toll-free), 613-730-6243 or email

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Readers share the best book they’ve recently read

We shared some reading recommendations submitted by Fellows last month. We asked in turn: What is the best book you’ve recently read?

Here are some of the responses we received from readers:

  1. “One of my favourite new books of 2018 is New Power: How power works in our hyperconnected world — and how to make it work for you by Jeremy Heimans and Henry Timms. Heimans and Timms have studied hundreds of global change movements and have identified three key patterns about how to make change happen and our role in it. Their primary thesis is that in our 21st century connected age power is shifting from primarily old power, which is top-down and held by a few, to new power, which is participatory and peer-driven. These shifts have incredible implications for how we make change happen with all stakeholders — old and new power.” – Rhonda St. Croix, Change Advisor at the Royal College
  2. “[I’m] reading Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.” – Dr. Verna Yiu, FRCPC
  3. Bury your dead by Louise Penny, a Canadian writer living in the Eastern townships of Quebec. Very interesting to see how the author brings us back to the question of the past (personal and historical) that lives in us, and the present that we must deal with. In the form of a thriller, she makes us think about this present that we must integrate with the past without becoming a prisoner. Louise Penny has won several awards for this book and we understand why.” – Dr. Louise Rousseau, MD, FRCPC
  4. “Madeline Albright, Fascism: A warning. If you are worried about Trump, here is confirmation.” – Dr. Jaswant Guzder, FRCPC
  5. “The best book this year for me: A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. A very unusual story of a Russian gentleman confined to a hotel in Moscow. Set in the time of the revolution and onwards. Full of unusual and unlikely characters.” – Dr. Angela Enright, FRCPC
  6. Five Days at Memorial - Sheri Fink,” – Dr. John Cannon, FRCPC
  7. “The best book I have read recently is Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking. The author, an introvert, explores her sometimes difficult journey in a world that associates success to being an extrovert. It is a powerful read and brings us back to the value of solitude and being a good listener.” – Dr. Nadia Ismiil, FRCPC
  8. “About twenty-five years ago, I enjoyed reading Robert Louis Stevenson’s Travels with a Donkey in the Cervennes and wondered if I would enjoy it as much now. I don’t often re-read books but have found some of Salinger, Sinclair Lewis, Chaucer, Samuel Johnson, John Steinbeck and Lewis Carroll are even better with additional insights that come with increasing age, experience and, one hopes, wisdom. Keen walkers will understand RLS’s frustrations and joys as he makes his way over the hills. It was a greater delight the second time.” – Dr. Jock Murray, FRCPC

Hidden talents

Dr. Gary Dvorkin, FRCPC, and Dr. Lawrence Matrick, FRCPC, join Drs. Nicolas and Cimolai as Fellows who are also published authors.

Dr. Dvorkin’s novel, Ransom’s Voice, is a psychological thriller that follows a young woman attempting to navigate the voices in her life to reclaim her sanity. It has received dozens of 5-star reviews on and

Dr. Matrick’s second novel, and first work of fiction, is a contemporary action-thriller that tells the story of a psychiatrist fighting his way out from under the thumb of a Mexican drug cartel. Titled The Quisling, it was published in February 2018.

Do you have any hidden talents, interesting hobbies or accomplishments? We’d love to hear from you! Email us at

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Want more value for your membership?

Attention: Royal College members

In late August/early September, you will receive an important email. Please don’t delete it. It will contain a personalized link to our Member Value Survey.

We are relying on the data from that survey to guide implementation of our member value initiatives (a main component of our new strategic plan: 2018-2020).

The survey will ask for your

  • input on current services,
  • thoughts on potential services (including educational content development), and
  • feedback related to our organization’s communications efforts.

The survey is only expected to take 15 minutes.

Watch your inbox for your personalized link

The survey will come as a personalized link in an email. It will direct you to a survey platform hosted by a third-party service provider (The Portage Group) with expertise in research for member-based organizations. The link is safe; so is your identity. Results will be confidential and only shared with the Royal College in an aggregate fashion.

More details will be included in the survey invitation.

Help us spread the word. Tell your specialist colleagues about this survey and help encourage participation. Our objective is to improve your Royal College experience.


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Announcing our latest research grant recipients (preview their projects!)

Meet the recipients for 2018 of two very competitive research grants:

  • Medical Education Research Grant (MERG) supports work that will advance the field of postgraduate medical education or continuing professional development.
  • Royal College/Associated Medical Services (AMS) CanMEDS Research Development Grant supports research development or implementation of projects that advance compassion and caring as realized through the intrinsic CanMEDS roles.

Scroll through the list to find out more about the projects being funded.

  1. MERG recipient: Elif Bilgic, PhD (McGill University)

    Development of a curriculum to teach and assess advanced laparoscopic suturing skills: Taking first steps in the development of an advanced laparoscopic surgery program

    Laparoscopic suturing is an advanced skill that is essential for a wide range of procedures; however, it is also one of the most challenging skills to master. Dr. Bilgic’s project will develop models for advanced laparoscopic suturing and provide evidence in the context of assessment and training — first steps to develop an advanced laparoscopic surgery program that will include other advanced skills that lack representation within simulation training.
  2. MERG recipient: Tristen Gilchrist, MD, FRCPC (University of British Columbia)

    Residents’ recognition and disclosure of limitations: how it impacts entrustment decisions on the Clinical Teaching Unit

    Competency assessments for ward-based medicine have some reliance on residents recognizing and disclosing their limitations. Dr. Gilchrist’s project could provide a model of the tacit relationship between disclosure of limitations, requests for clinical support, entrustment decisions and assessments within supervisor-resident dyads. It may deepen our understanding of how clinical faculty interpret the meaning of entrustment and aid in the design and revision of entrustment scales and workplace-based assessments.
  3. MERG recipient: Anna MacLeod, PhD (Dalhousie University)

    Cadaver as practice: A sociomaterial ethnography

    Cadaver-based simulation (CBS) is emerging as a promising method for competency-based medical education; however, a rigorous evidence base to inform recommendations about CBS in this context is lacking. Dr. MacLeod’s project will evaluate the potential role of CBS in postgraduate education, including its social and material dimensions, as a possible way to reduce costs and improve learning in Emergency Medicine and other residency programs.
  4. MERG recipient: Tracy Moniz, PhD (Mount Saint Vincent University)

    How are postgraduate medical educators using reflective writing to remediate professionalism?

    Problems with professionalism, unless appropriately and effectively remediated, portend serious problems in practice. Dr Moniz’s project will explore how medical educators navigate remediation around the “Professional” Role when challenges arise in residency. Her aim is to enhance our understanding of the potential and pitfalls of reflective writing to inform more tailored and effective approaches to professionalism remediation.
  5. MERG recipient: Heather Waters, MD, CCFP, FCFP (McMaster University)

    Optimizing feedback from direct observation of clinical performance: Learner feedback-seeking and avoidance behaviour in four clinical settings

    Understanding how to optimize feedback from direct observation is essential, given medical education's move towards competency-based, outcomes-oriented training. Dr. Waters’ project will develop our understanding of the factors that impact medical learners’ behaviours and perceptions related to feedback from direct observation; to assist medical teachers, programs and learners in using direct observation to its highest potential.
  6. MERG recipient: Timothy J. Wood, PhD (University of Ottawa)

    Implicit versus explicit first impressions in the workplace: Will raters overcome their first impressions when learner performance changes?

    A rating should reflect a learner’s overall abilities and not just the first few seconds with a patient; therefore, it is important to understand the degree raters are influenced by their first impression, especially if performance of the learner changes during the course of the assessment. Dr. Wood’s project will examine first impressions in a more naturalistic task, in order to determine the degree a first impression influences raters.
  7. Royal College/AMS CanMEDS grant recipient: Anita Cheng, MD, FRCPC, MHPE (Children’s Hospital, London)

    Difficult Conversations Training through Reflective Practice Initiative

    Breaking bad news can be challenging and anxiety-provoking for both trainees and families. Since unexpected challenges often arise during high stakes conversations, reflection and a developing reflective practice can assist with compassionately and effectively responding to these challenges. Dr. Cheng’s project proposes a Difficult Conversations Training through Reflective Practice Initiative founded on three pillars: educational research, innovative curriculum and creating community.
  8. Royal College/AMS CanMEDS grant recipient: Taryn Taylor, MD, PhD, FRCSC (London Health Sciences Centre, Western University)

    Fatigue management strategies among practicing clinicians and residents: A descriptive catalogue with implications for patient care and provider wellbeing

    Fatigue threatens physician wellbeing and interferes with the provision of high-quality, compassionate patient care. Dr. Taylor’s project will examine the current fatigue management practices of physicians and senior trainees (as they pertain to patient safety, interpersonal conduct and physician wellness) to help develop clear expectations on what it means to demonstrate competence in fatigue management.
  9. Royal College/AMS CanMEDS grant recipient: Katherine Wisener, MA, PhD (Candidate) (University of British Columbia)

    Incentivizing medical teachers: Exploring the role of incentives in influencing clinicians’ motivations to teach

    The success of any competency-based medical education program is dependent on the quality of teaching provided by medical educators. By identifying clinicians’ teaching motivations and what role incentives play in influencing those motivations, Ms. Wisener’s project aims to inform strategies in how to incentivize effective teaching across all CanMEDS domains and to help address growing recruitment issues.
  10. Royal College/AMS CanMEDS grant recipient: Yvonne Ying, MD, MSE, Med, MSc (GlobSurg), FRCSC (University of Ottawa)

    The hidden curriculum and the "un-teaching" of health advocacy in specialty medicine

    The role of “Health Advocate” has been a part of postgraduate medical education since the introduction of CanMEDS in 2005; however, it remains challenging to teach and assess, and residents self-report decreasing health advocacy and community engagement during specialty training. Dr. Ying’s project aims to illuminate why this is and what changes could be made to curriculum to ensure that health advocacy becomes part of a resident’s professional identity and practice.

More detailed descriptions of these projects can be accessed on our MERG recipient webpage or Royal College/AMS CanMEDS grant recipient webpage.

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Find out which 12 disciplines are working toward launching CBD in 2019

Twelve disciplines are proceeding with plans to move towards launching their residency training under Competence by Design (CBD) in 2019.

The CBD cohort anticipated for 2019 was determined during a May 7 teleconference. The postgraduate deans of Canada’s 17 medical schools, alongside specialty committee chairs, competency-based medical education leads and the Royal College based their decision on the readiness of each discipline’s specialty committee and local programs.

Meet the 2019 CBD cohort
Medical disciplines
  1. Critical Care Medicine
  2. Gastroenterology
  3. General Internal Medicine
  4. Geriatric Medicine
  5. Internal Medicine
  6. Rheumatology
  7. Radiation Oncology
Surgical disciplines
  1. Cardiac Surgery
  2. Neurosurgery
  3. Obstetrics and Gynecology
Laboratory disciplines
  1. Anatomical Pathology
  2. General Pathology

This decision-making process was advanced six months earlier than in the past, to allow more time for planning and implementation support. The Royal College continues to work collaboratively with our partners in postgraduate medical education to finalize CBD standards documents and achieve preparedness for launch next July.

Cohorts 1 and 2 are progressing, more prep underway

This agreement for 2019 builds on the 2017 launch of Anesthesiology and Otolaryngology — Head and Neck Surgery (Cohort 1) and the July 1, 2018, launch of Cohort 2:

  • Emergency Medicine,
  • Forensic Pathology,
  • Medical Oncology,
  • Nephrology,
  • Surgical Foundations and
  • Urology.

“We sincerely appreciate the time and effort of faculty members, committee members and stakeholders, who are diligently working through the process and engaging their communities to define new national standards,” said CEO Andrew Padmos, MD, FRCPC.

“Change is always challenging,” added Kenneth A. Harris, MD, FRCSC, executive director of Specialty Education. “We appreciate everyone’s commitment to make sure the end results are effective for advancing specialty medical education and patient care.”

When is your specialty targeted to launch CBD?


Competency-based medical education (CBME) is a worldwide movement that focuses on the learners, allowing them to guide their own educations and to work at their own paces. CBD is the Royal College’s adaptation of CBME for residency training and specialty practice in Canada. CBD de-emphasizes the time spent in training and focuses on developing implicit, discipline-specific competencies across all CanMEDS Roles. The hope is for CBD to improve patient care by improving learning from residency to retirement.

Stay up-to-date with the latest CBD news
Subscribe to our quarterly newsletter, CBD Community Touchpoint.

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Support for your medical education studies

Are you recently enrolled in graduate studies in medical education? Or, do you have imminent plans to begin PhD or Master’s level studies in education or a related field?

Consider applying for our Robert Maudsley Fellowship for Studies in Medical Education. This one-year fellowship supports specialists seeking to acquire knowledge and skills in the field of medical education through formal graduate training.

Learn more or apply for this grant.

The deadline to apply is September 21, 2018.

Eligible programs of study for the 2019 grant begin after July 1, 2018, but no later than June 30, 2019.

Please direct questions to

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Strategic call for applications! Advancing evaluation of competency-based medical education across the continuum

Are you working on scholarship related to competency-based medical education?

Submit an application for our strategic request for proposals on the theme: Advancing evaluation of competency-based medical education across the continuum.

Funding is to a maximum of $30,000 per project for a two-year period.

Learn more or apply for this grant.

The deadline to apply is September 21, 2018.

Note re: eligibility

Current employees and paid-contractors (e.g. CPD educators) of the Royal College are not eligible to apply for this Strategic Request for Proposals. If your project includes an employee/contractor (as principal investigator or co-investigator) you are instead invited to apply for a Royal College Intramural Grant.

Please direct questions to

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Members in the news

Doctor walking down a hospital hallway

“Trauma is a disease of young people,” – Najma Ahmed, MDCM, FRCPC (“St. Mike’s trauma surgeon relives night of the Danforth shooting,” Toronto Star)

“What we introduced here in Montreal is this new catheter that was purpose-built for trauma. It’s a very small-sized catheter and what the difference is on this is it goes on the inside of the blood vessel to stop bleeding with a balloon at the end of the catheter,” - Andrew Beckett, MD, FRCSC (“A first in Canada for a new technique in surgical emergencies, Radio Canada International)

“The available evidence is shared and should be viewed with skepticism,” James Bentley, MBChB, FRCSCLe talc est-il sécuritaire, ou peut-il causer le cancer? » Radio-Canada)

“People don’t put sunscreen far enough or they sweat it off and don’t re-apply,” - Julia Carroll, MD, FRCPC (“How to reverse common signs of sun damageGlobal News)

“Rather than using two rods, we use one rod, and rather than using 15 to 20 screws we use between two and four,” - Ron El-Hawary, MD, FRCSC (“Meet the Halifax doctor changing how scoliosis is treated in North America, Global News)

“Simply crossing our fingers does not prevent death. Before, during, and after the heat wave, it is necessary to energetically activate… to prevent,” - Ak’ingabe Guyon, MD, FRCPCOpinion : Éviter de mourir en se croisant les doigts, » La Presse et leSoleil)

“We need to be ready to look after that population and it’s a big population,” – Mark Henderson, MD, FRCPC (“Cardiologist preps for oncoming tsunami of Baby Boomers with heart disease,”

“This system is aimed at keeping the adoption rate high by keeping the technology simple,” - Erin Keely, MD, FRCPC (“A made-in-Ottawa solution to get around long wait times to see medical specialists,” Ottawa Citizen)

“So the ultimate goal isn’t finding the bullet. From a trauma surgeon’s perspective, it’s about finding what injuries the bullet has caused,” - Bernard Lawless, MD, FRCSC (“The Surgeon vs. The Bullet: Meet the trauma doctor who performed life saving surgery on Danforth shooting victims,” Calgary Herald).

"We're going to spend more time talking about what to do about things as opposed to figuring out what the problem is,” Doug Manuel, MD, FRCPC (“Test your risk of heart disease with a new online lifestyle calculator,” CTV News). Dr. Kumanan Wilson, FRCPC, is also quoted.

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In memoriam


Eduardo Alvarez, MD, FRCSC, died on June 10, 2018, in Regina, Sask., at age 88. Dr. Alvarez was certified by the Royal College in Plastic Surgery in 1965. Born in a small village in Northern Spain, he eventually journeyed to Canada. Among his accomplishments, he established the burn unit at Regina’s General Hospital. Read more about Dr. Alvarez.

Gordon Walter D. Armstrong, MDCM, FRCSC, died on June 24, 2018, in Ottawa, Ont., at age 95. Dr. Armstrong was certified by the Royal College in Orthopedic Surgery in 1954. He was recognized internationally for his work and innovations in the development of modern spine surgery. Read more about Dr. Armstrong.

Edwin James Brown, MDCM, FRCSC, died in April 18, 2018, in Montreal, Que., at age 98. Dr. Brown was certified by the Royal College in General Surgery in 1953. A well-respected surgeon, he practised in Lachine, Que., for over 40 years before retiring in 1996. Read more about Dr. Brown.

Nicolas Forbath, MD, FRCPC, died on July 4, 2018, in Toronto, Ont., at age 89. Dr. Forbath was certified by the Royal College in Internal Medicine in 1962. He was part of the world’s first Coronary Care Unit at the Toronto General Hospital. Read more about Dr. Forbath.

Gerald David Hart, MD, FRCPC, died on June 26, 2018, in Thornhill, Ont., at age 90. Dr. Hart was certified by the Royal College in Internal Medicine in 1957.

Nabil Yousef Hazzi, MBChB, FRCSC, died in May 22, 2018, in Quebec, Que., at age 92. Dr. Hazzi was certified by the Royal College in General Surgery in 1970. Remembered for his kindness, humility and wisdom, he is greatly missed by his family and friends. Read more about Dr. Hazzi.

Paul Kehinde (PK) Joseph, MBBS, FRCPC, died on June 3, 2018, in Halifax, N.S., at age 66. Dr. Joseph was certified by the Royal College in Radiation Oncology in 1986. He was a leader in cancer treatment in Nova Scotia, serving in many leadership capacities including as Head of the QEII Cancer Program. Read more about Dr. Joseph.

Nancy Isabel Smith Merritt, MD, FRCSC, died on June 27, 2018, in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ont., at age 73. Dr. Smith was certified by the Royal College in Ophthalmology in 1974. She worked as an ophthalmologist for 37 years in Niagara-on-the-Lake and in Niagara Falls, Ont. Read more about Dr. Merritt.

Hans Messner, MD, FRCPC, died on July 24, 2018, in Toronto, Ont., at age 77. Dr. Messner was certified by the Royal College in Internal Medicine in 1975. He was a pioneer of stem cell transplantation at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, where he worked for almost 50 years. Read more about Dr. Messner.

Andrew Burger Murray, MBChB, FRCPC, died on June 24, 2018, in West Vancouver, B.C., at age 91. Dr. Murray was certified by the Royal College in Pediatrics in 1962. Known for his research on asthmatic children exposed to secondhand smoke and dust mites, he was the first head of BC Children’s Hospital’s Allergy Division. Read more about Dr. Murray.

Stanley Oleksiuk, MD, FRCSC, died on June 26, 2018, in Windsor, Ont., at age 89. Dr. Oleksiuk was certified by the Royal College in Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery in 1960. He was a past president of Essex County Medical Society. He retired from practice in Windsor in 2008. Read more about Dr. Oleksiuk.

Linda Kathleen Panaro, MDCM, FRCPC, died on June 20, 2018, in Ottawa, Ont., at age 58. Dr. Panaro was certified by the Royal College in Public Health and Preventive Medicine in 1990. She had an accomplished career and pursued a diversity of experiences and hobbies, in spite of living with ALS. Read more about Dr. Panaro.

William L. Tew, MD, FRCSC, died on June 28, 2018, in Grand Bend, Ont., at age 89. Dr. Tew was certified by the Royal College in Obstetrics and Gynecology in 1958. After 55 years, he retired from private practice in gynecology in fall 2015.


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