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PTMA Newsletter - Issue 3 2015

Don’t Leave Seniors Out in the Cold –


DemandAPlan.caThis federal election, The Canadian Medical Association and the Alliance for a National Seniors Strategy are asking Canadians to add their voice to the call for a National Seniors Strategy. On March 23, CMA launched to build and engage a community of supporters. Keep an eye out for TV spots “Don’t Leave Seniors Out in The Cold” which will air on National TV from April 27 – May 25.

Visitors to the site are invited to enter their email address to show their support for the campaign. They will then receive regular email and social media updates about the campaign.

Roundtables on Seniors Issues

During CMA’s 2014 Lobby Day, the association called on Members of Parliament to hold roundtables in their ridings on the topic of seniors care. These roundtables would fulfill two objectives:

  • To consult with Canadians at a local level on the seniors issues affecting them and their communities, to inform CMA’s development of, and advocacy for, a national seniors strategy.
  • To engage with Members of Parliament and candidates in key ridings on the issue of seniors care and demonstrate the importance of this topic to riding constituents in advance of the federal election, in an effort to inform party platform development.

Since then, the CMA has been working with all political parties to support these events in ridings across Canada. So far, twenty roundtables have taken place across the country. The CMA identifies local representatives including members of the Board of Directors and MD-MP Contact Program to represent the association at these events. This approach allows the association to have a grassroots presence at these events while bringing the perspective of a local physician.

For addition information contact Renée Belanger.

“Unprecedented” attack on physician autonomy draws CMA response

An “unprecedented attack on the professional autonomy of physicians” has prompted the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) to take historic action.

For the first time, the CMA has submitted a brief to Quebec’s National Assembly – in conjunction with the Quebec Medical Association (QMA) – to protest Bill 20, which was introduced by the Quebec government as draft legislation last fall.

The proposed legislation would place quotas on the number of patients that must be seen by family physicians and specialists, as well as mandating that physicians perform other services (such as providing in-hospital care) or face penalties.

QMA President Laurent Marcoux and Pierre Harvey, French spokesperson for the Canadian Medical Association and a member of the CMA Board of Directors, recently appeared before the committee conducting public hearings into the proposed legislation. The controversial legislation has been accompanied by negative comments from the Quebec health minister concerning the productivity of physicians in the province.

The brief from the CMA and QMA applauds the intent – to improve access to health care in the province – but criticizes the approach taken by the Quebec government and the current lack of detail around specific legislation to support the bill.

“Our brief says a lot about how concerned we are about Bill 20,” says CMA President Chris Simpson.

“The bill represents an attack on the professional autonomy of physicians unlike any we have seen before in the history of organized medicine in Canada. The CMA has to join the QMA in speaking out about this because of the consequences this bill could have on the entire medical profession.”

Speaking specifically to the plans to impose quotas on Quebec physicians, the brief states this could have numerous adverse effects by encouraging physicians to “choose quantity of care over quality, resulting in incomplete examinations, increased use of diagnostic tests and overdiagnosis.”

All-party caucus on seniors care gains support

All major federal parties are interested in creating an all party caucus to raise the profile of the need for better seniors care in Canada.

The Canadian Medical Association recently sponsored a reception on Parliament Hill at which Members of Parliament Harold Albrecht from the Conservative Party, Irene Mathyssen of the NDP and John McCallum of the Liberals spoke in support of such a caucus.

While all agreed there is an important need for non-partisan federal initiative to review seniors care in Canada, they agreed the actual creation of the caucus will occur after the next federal election when – as Albrecht noted - more than 100 new MPs would be able to contribute on the issue.

Following remarks from the Speaker of the House Andrew Scheer, CMA Board Chair Brian Brodie opened the reception by applauding plans for the initiative and offering to have the CMA act as a resource for research and expertise. “The CMA is solidly behind you,” he said.

Brodie reiterated the concerns the CMA has about the current and future challenges facing the health care system in providing proper care for the elderly.

“Our hospitals have become overcrowded because there are thousands of seniors across the country that are in acute care hospital beds when they should be in long-term facilities or at home with community care support,” he said.

“This is a prime reason why physicians believe fixing seniors care will go a long way in fixing the entire health care system.”

McCallum noted that his perception of the CMA has changed “radically” in recent years, and he spoke highly of the association and its leadership on issues of public importance such as seniors care.

“All three parties are enthusiastic about carrying out this work,” he said.

“Canadians are worried about their retirement years,” said Mathyssen, noting that a quarter of a million seniors exist below the poverty line.

She added that the cost of doing nothing on seniors care would be to add a heavy burden on Canadians in the future.

Health inequities an important issue for physicians

Social determinants of health such as income are matters of profound concern to physicians and the national medical associations who represent them, including the Canadian Medical Association (CMA).

That was the clear message from a conference that took place in London, UK, at the end of March that was co-sponsored by the CMA, British Medical Association, World Medical Association (WMA) and the University College London Institute of Health Equity.

The keen interest in this area among physicians and the public was demonstrated by the response to a blog post about the conference by CMA President Chris Simpson, who spoke at the event. The post has received thousands of views and prompted widespread debate on social media about the role of the medical profession in addressing health inequities.

In his post, Simpson provided a detailed summary of the meeting, noting the scope of international speakers and the important role played by some Canadian physicians in this area — including CMA former president Dr. Anna Reid, who spoke about health inequities and First Nations peoples.

“Canada’s work on the social determinants of health stands out on the international stage, although we have much more work to do,” Simpson blogged.

Addressing the fundamental issue of why physicians should care about the social determinants of health, Simpson wrote “everything that affects the health of our patients should concern us.”

He continued: “We have only just begun to explore the positive influence doctors can have at the bedside, in the boardrooms, in academic health policy circles and at the political level (locally, nationally and internationally).

“The CMA is proud of Canada’s physician leaders in bringing these issues to the fore, and we will continue to make this a core strategic priority for the organization.”

The prominent role played by the CMA was applauded by Dr. Gary Bloch, from St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, who has developed and implemented a clinical tool to help assess and ‘treat’ poverty. In London, Bloch presented work on the multidisciplinary, multi-faceted approach to social determinants taken by the family health team at St. Michael's.

“I am amazed at how well the CMA has positioned itself and Canadian medicine as a global centre of action on the social determinants of health,” he said following the meeting.

Delegates provided input into continuing WMA policy work on health equity and the social determinants over the coming year, after hearing examples of practical actions that medical associations and individual physicians can take to address these issues.

Health inequities and the social determinants of health are stated priorities for Sir Michael Marmot, director of the Institute of Health Equity and an acknowledged international leader on health equity who will become WMA president in October.

The conference outcome will also be discussed at the 200th WMA Council Session meeting in Oslo, Norway, April 16-18.

DynaMed launches improved app

DynaMed – a leading point-of-care clinical resource available to CMA members – now has a new app. The app offers easy one-time activation and an improved user experience with access to current evidence-based information offline and the ability to bookmark favourites, email topics and save notes about particular topics. Members who were already using the DynaMed app are invited to download the new app as the previous versions of the app will no longer be updated with the latest DynaMed content. Learn more.

CMA membership now includes access to ClinicalKey

In 2014, the popular resource MD Consult was discontinued by Elsevier. Much of the same great content is now available in ClinicalKey, plus much more. This valuable benefit saves CMA members up to $1,200* a year.

ClinicalKey is a leading online clinical tool that searches across more than 1,200 textbooks, 650 journals, 13,500 medical and surgical videos, 15,000+ customizable patient handouts and more than five million images across 30+ medical specialties. “ClinicalKey has become an essential complement to DynaMed and UpToDate when I am at my patient’s bedside,” said Dr. Pierre Harvey, a practising physician. Learn more.

*Maximum cost of an annual personal subscription to one ClinicalKey specialty package

CMAJ releases Focus on Choosing Wisely Canada e-book

Looking for a resource on Choosing Wisely Canada (CWC) recommendations? Focus on Choosing Wisely Canada is a compilation of materials published in the CMAJ over the past year related to the initiative. The practice articles and online true-false questions based on CWC recommendations included in this e-book make it an excellent reference for practitioners and a teaching resource for academic clinicians and trainees. Available online.

Every Physician Has a Story

On April 15, MD Financial Management launched its 2015 Brand Awareness campaign which will continue to generate awareness of the new brand and brand promise, through the voice of clients. This new campaign invites physicians to visit the MD testimonials landing page which will feature testimonial videos from clients, in both English and French, and encourage them to share their own MD stories with us. Hear more.

Leadership and Learning

The CMA is building on the 34-year success of its industry leading PMI physician leadership courses. Physicians can now take advantage of facilitated, accredited, online PMI physician leadership courses that offer a unique learning opportunity, developed exclusively for physicians.

New! Effective Communication Skills for Physician Leaders — September 15–October 25, 2015 and November 2-December 13, 2015

Physicians will gain knowledge of concepts and key themes in effective communication to enrich their practice and will develop a greater understanding of their communication style and its impact on others.

Leadership Begins with Self-awareness — October 19–November 29, 2015

The course promotes greater self-awareness by teaching the skills associated with examining your own values and principles, thinking patterns, assumptions and emotional skills, and addressing strengths and limitations.

If you or a member require any additional information, please email

Learn more about Online PMI physician leadership

Upcoming PMI Physician Leadership Courses (Halifax, Nova Scotia)

Members can attend one or both of the PMI physician leadership courses being offered in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in early June for an opportunity to build your brand as a physician leader, and network with physician colleagues from across the country.

Developing and Leading System Improvement — June 1 – 2, 2015

The two-day course provides an introduction to quality improvement (QI) methodology and best practice. Upon completion of the course, you will be able to describe the theory and science of QI, apply tools that reveal and explore patterns and processes, and use course content to further a quality improvement agenda within your own organization. Find out more and register.

Leadership Strategies for Sustainable Physician Engagement — June 3 - 4, 2015

Physician engagement remains one of the biggest challenges facing our health system. This two-day course provides you with the knowledge, skills and abilities you need to become an active leader, and bring about effective physician engagement wherever you work. Find out more and register.

For more information on all PMI physician leadership courses, please visit or email

The CMA’s 2015 New in Practice guide is now available

The CMA’s New in Practice guide contains everything residents need to know about transitioning into practice. Topics include practice opportunities, medical billing, financial planning and insurance, medical law, and provincial and territorial medical association overviews.

Printed copies were distributed to over 24,000 residents across Canada in March and April.

The guide can be viewed in flipbook format or downloaded as a PDF at

Upcoming events in your province or territory

Date Event City Province Details
30-Apr-3-MayOntario Medical Association Annual General Meeting 2015TorontoONMD/CMA
1-MaySupper Seminar : Retirement and it’s strategy’sPointe-ClaireQCMD Seminar
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronCalgaryABFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronRichmond HillONFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronRichmond HillONFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronPrince GeorgeBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronMontrealQCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronMontrealQCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronNanaimoBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronEdmontonABFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronScarboroughONFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronCoquitlamBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronAbbotsfordBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronKelownaBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronSurreyBCFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronSt. CatharinesONFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronHamiltonONFamily Event
2-MayAvengers: Age of UltronMississaugaONFamily Event
3-MayAvengers: Age of UltronTorontoONFamily Event
4-MayU.S. Tax SeminarVancouverBCMD Seminar
5-MaySupper Conference: Interactif seminar with J.-F. BordeleauQuebecQCMD Seminar
6-MayIncorporation – the right choice for your practice?VancouverBCMD Seminar
6-MayEstate Planning for Incorporated PhysiciansToronto ONMD Seminar
7-MayIncorporation: The Right Choice For Your Practice?VancouverBCMD Seminar
7-MayUsing permanent insurance to build wealthSurreyBCMD Seminar
8-MayDoctors Manitoba – 107th Annual General MeetingWinnipegMBMD/CMA
6-9-May Primary Care TodayTorontoONMD/CMA Exhibiting
7-9-MayEmergency Medicine UpdateTorontoONMD/CMA Sponsoring & Exhibiting
8-9-MaySaskatchewan Medical Association Annual GeneralSaskatoonSKMD/CMA
9-MayResident Gala - McGillMontrealQCNetworking
9-MayBal des 4e LavalLavalQCNetworking
11-MayOntario IMG CMA TalkTorontoONMD/CMA Seminar
12-MayEstate Planning SeminarGrande PrairieABMD Seminar
15-MayuOttawa Grad Party SponsorshipOttawaONSponsorship
19 MayRound Table on Seniors CareMarkhamONCMA Event
20 MayRound Table on Seniors CareKitchenerONCMA Event
20-MayRimouski Financial Talk RimouskiQCMD Seminar
20-23-MayCanadian Association of Physical Medicine & RehabilitationVancouverBCMD/CMA Exhibiting
23-24-MayBritish Columbia College of Family PhysiciansVancouverBCMD/CMA Exhibiting
24-MayIncorporation Seminar at Botanic GardensDevonABMD Seminar
27 MayUniversité de Laval – Médecine familialeLavalQCPractice Management Curriculum (PMC)
28-30-MayCanadian Society of Palliative Care PhysiciansCalgaryABMD/CMA Exhibiting
29-MayOntario Medical Student Bursary Fund – Golf TournamentMarkhamONMD Sponsoring
29-MaySaskatoon Resident IMG TalkSaskatoonSKMD Seminar
30-MayNew Brunswick Medical Society Foundation-Celebration of Medicine 2015St. Andrew’sNBMD/CMA Exhibiting
4-JunPicnic at the ZooEdmontonABClient Appreciation
4-6-JunNew Brunswick College of Family PhysiciansMonctonNBMD/CMA Exhibiting
5-6-JunDoctors Nova Scotia Annual ConferenceCape BretonNSMD/CMA
6- JunDoctors of BC Annual Meeting & Convention 2015VancouverBCMD/CMA
6-JunReception and Wine TastingCaraquetNBClient Appreciation
6- JunNewfoundland and Labrador Medical Association Annual General MeetingSt. John’sNLMD/CMA
5-7-JunRetirement Retreat WeekendJackson’s PointONMD Event
8-JunOntario IMG Financial TalkTorontoONMD Seminar
9-12-JunSociety of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada Annual MeetingQuebecQCMD/CMA Exhibiting
12-JunClient Appreciation at Dancing Moose CaféYellowknifeNWTClient Appreciation
12-JunU of A Internal Med AHDEdmontonABMD Seminar
13-JunUBC Survival Skills ConferenceVancouver BCTrade Show
15-JunOntario IMG CMA TalkTorontoONMD/CMA Seminar
16-17 JuneUBC Kelowna Family Medicine ProgramKelowna BCPractice Management Curriculum (PMC)
18-JunUBC Neurology AHDVancouverBCMD Seminar
20-JunMovie Inside Out (Vice Versa)ChicoutimiQCFamily Event
19-22-JunCAS 2015-Canadian Anesthesiologists’ Society Annual MeetingOttawaONMD/CMA Exhibiting
23-JunUBC PG Residents OrientationPrince GeorgeBCMD Seminar
25-JunU of T Resident OrientationTorontoONTrade Show
26-JunResident Orientation – U of CCalgaryABTrade Show
29-JunResident Orientation – U of AEdmontonABTrade Show
2-JulMcMaster Resident OrientationHamiltonONTrade Show
2-JulWestern Resident OrientationLondonONTrade Show
7-JulMinions 2DSaskatoonSKFamily Event
20-JulOntario IMG Financial TalkTorontoONMD Seminar
20-JulOntario IMG CMA TalkTorontoONMD/CMA Seminar

For additional information please contact Geneva Forestell.