Dear members and prospective members:
It is a tumultuous time in medicine as COVID continues, the threat of a ‘twindemic’ with flu season looms, and we grapple with the on-going system-wide healthcare crisis while navigating physician negotiations with government (both inside and outside the PMA). Consultant Specialists of BC knows the hard work Specialists continue to provide. We are vigorously advocating for you and we need you to make your voices heard to support that advocacy. Please read on to hear what we’ve been working on and how you can help:
- Waitlist Survey: In order to assist our ongoing advocacy efforts, cSBC urgently needs feedback on your waitlist for outpatient Specialist consultative services. Please follow the link below to fill out a very short (< 1 minute) survey on your waitlist. Unless you know the size of your current waitlist, we suggest that you have access to your EMR when completing the survey. Survey Link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/GYHKVNY
- Follow-up on cSBC ‘Call to Action’ and Doctors of BC response – After cSBC’s August 26 ‘Call to Action’ we received emails from Specialists detailing concerns with their current practice environment and the lack of attention to the crisis in Specialty Care that equals that of the crisis in Primary Care. These concerns included:
- Inadequate government attention to and prioritization of Specialist Care for BC patients
- Doctors of BC level of advocacy for Specialists
- Lack of recognition that the issues affecting Primary Care practices also impact Specialty Care practices, including rising overhead costs and increasing burden of unpaid administrative work
- The need for immediate support of Specialist outpatient practices which represent the infrastructure of consultative Specialist care in BC
- Growing Specialist consultation waitlists – the Specialist equivalent of the Primary Care unattached patient problem
- The increasing workload burdens faced by APP Specialists with fixed contract income
- The burden of after-hours work
- Increasing complexity of patients
- Pervasive Specialist burnout
- Increasing bureaucracy of Pharmacare and Special Authority approval
While it was gratifying to see some of these Specialty Care issues formally acknowledged in the September 1 Doctors of BC President’s letter, at this stage we remain without a balanced plan to address these Specialty Care issues with the same seriousness and will that has been appropriately applied by government to Primary Care. Please continue to provide your individual feedback to Doctors of BC directly via [email protected] and copy us at [email protected].
- Call for Patient Care and Physician stories – In order to support the advocacy by cSBC, we need stories about how delivery of Specialty Patient Care has been affected by the healthcare crisis in your practice. All stories are helpful, especially about individual patients who have been negatively impacted by the crisis in Specialty Care. These stories may include:
- Impact of delayed consultation because of consultative wait times
- Impact of delayed diagnostic tests
- Impact of delayed treatments including surgeries
- Impact of staffing shortages on delivery of care
- Physician stories regarding declining ability to deliver care, including secondary to stress/burnout/limited personal capacity/rising costs, etc
Please send your patient care and physician stories to [email protected]
- PMA Negotiations – cSBC understands that PMA negotiations are resuming over the coming weeks. cSBC continues to be in regular contact with Doctors of BC to advocate on your behalf. We hope to see that a measure of balance is brought to the negotiations to ensure that adequate funding is secured to address the parallel issues in Specialty Care to those of our Primary Care colleagues.
- Economics Policy Advisory Committee Update – EPAC has been meeting with increasing frequency to ensure that cSBC is ready to assist with disparity allocations if/when the PMA is ratified. The culmination of this work to date will be presented at a special Council Meeting on September 15, 2022 to inform and receive feedback from Council Representatives.
- cSBC Membership – In order to maintain a strong organization that can continue to advocate on behalf of all Specialists, all Specialists need to support the organization. cSBC has been challenged with reaching potential Specialist members as Doctors of BC has limited access to their full Specialist mailing list to once a year. We are reliant on an incomplete list, and on Section Heads to forward these communications to members of their sections and encourage their members to join cSBC and contribute to the financial support of the only organization that is dedicated to advocating on behalf of all Specialists.
Specialist Colleagues – if you are not yet a member of Consultant Specialists of BC, please contribute to your organization and JOIN NOW!
To join, go to https://doctorsofbc.ca/account/sections Scroll down to Consultant Specialists of BC, click on the + sign, check the box for regular $450; first-year practice/disabled/parental leave $225; OR student/resident/retired free. Click the JOIN SELECTED SECTIONS AND SOCIETIES button to pay. Thank you!
Not sure if you’ve joined this year? Drop our Executive Director a line to check.
Thank you for your interest and engagement,
Dr Chris Hoag