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May 30-31, 2019


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Teeswater Family Practitioner Honoured

Dr. Marie Gear, a family practitioner in Teeswater, Ontario was presented with the Council Award at the College’s May meeting.

Dr. Gear recently retired after 39 years serving the people of the South Bruce Municipality and surrounding areas. She ran a busy family practice in Teeswater. She also worked in the Wingham and District Hospital doing in-patient care, anesthesia, emergency room coverage, obstetrics and surgical assist, as well as working in the hospital’s oncology clinic. Her practice extended to patients in retirement homes and long-term care. Dr. Gear served on numerous hospital committees and as Chief of Staff at the Wingham and District Hospital. She was also a long-serving board member at the Wingham hospital and then the Wingham- Listowel Memorial Hospital Alliance Board.

Along the way she gained the respect and admiration of the patients, colleagues and residents in her community.  It was in fact the Mayor and Council of South Bruce who put forth her nomination, a testament to her being described as the “cornerstone of family medicine” in the community.

Dr. Gear has left an indelible mark on her community by being a fierce advocate for patients as well as for her commitment to system reform and improvement. She is credited as being instrumental in the development of a comprehensive and connected community health care system in which primary care givers, hospitals, nursing home facilities and agencies coordinate patient care.  Patients point to her acts of professionalism, kindness and the profound effect on their lives as she guided them through both the best and worst of times.

We speak with Dr. Gear in the next issue of Dialogue.

Registrar/CEO’s Report

Dr. Nancy Whitmore, College Registrar/CEO, presented to Council the following key performance indicators:

  • The number of business days it takes the College to contact a complainant has dropped from 21 days to two days within one year;
  • The percentage of files completed has increased 73% in 2019
  • There has been an 150% increase in cases resolved through early resolution;
  • The time to complete a complaint case decreased by 32% in the fourth quarter of 2018 compared to the first quarter of 2018;
  • Spending for regulatory functions and statutory committees is below a two year average.

Dr. Whitmore also informed Council that we are now in the process of testing our new Quality Improvement tools with almost 1,000 family physicians.

Strategic Plan

Informed and inspired by feedback  from the profession and the public, the College’s direction for the next five years has been set. This plan will guide CPSO Council, management and staff in moving forward as we continue our work to fulfill our public interest mandate.

New Mission: Serving the People of Ontario Through Effective Regulation of Medical Doctors

New Vision: Trusted Doctors Providing Great Care

Strategic Priorities:

  • Right-Touch Regulation
  • Quality Care
  • Meaningful Engagement
  • System Collaboration
  • Continuous Improvement

Regulatory Principles:

  • We commit to be accountable, respectful, and responsive
  • We will demonstrate professionalism and excellence
  • We value communication and compassion

We have an article about the new strategic plan in the upcoming Dialogue.

Policy Redesign Implementation – Batch 1

Council has approved the first batch of policies that have been redesigned to improve their use and readability for physicians. The expectations in the policies have not changed.

The 11 policies have been redesigned to be more clear and concise and better distinguish between mandatory and permissive expectations. The policy redesign strategy reflects the “keep it simple” approach inherent in right-touch regulation.

Policies – External consultations

We want your feedback on three draft policies now out for consultation. We invite you to participate in these open consultations.

The three drafts are Disclosure of Harm, Boundary Violations and Prescribing Drugs.

Materials for each consultation, including instructions on submitting feedback, can be found by clicking on the links above. The deadline to provide feedback is August 2, 2019.

Your feedback is important to us.

We have articles about each of the draft policies in the upcoming Dialogue.

Cayton Report

Council was presented with information about a report resulting from an inquiry into  the College of Dental Surgeons of BC (CDSBC).

In 2018, the BC Minister of Health asked Mr. Harry  Cayton, the former CEO of the United Kingdom’s Professional Standards Authority,  to conduct an inquiry into the  CDSBC. The inquiry followed reports of the mishandling of allegations of sexually inappropriate comments made to a dentist by its then Registrar/CEO.

The scope of the inquiry was broader than this particular incident and Council was provided with a copy of the report  because it does address  the Health Professions Act and the statutory framework for health professional regulation in BC.  The report is relevant to the CPSO given the potential for health professional regulatory reform in Ontario and Mr. Cayton’s influence as an international expert in health regulation.

Overall, the report supports the work that the CPSO has done on governance, policy redesign and physician engagement, and the work that will be done as part of the strategic plan and continuing governance modernization.

Patient Partnership

Ms. Julie Drury, the inaugural chair of the province’s Patient and Family Advisory Council, spoke to Council about the importance of ensuring that the patient perspective be reflected in health- care policy and decision-making.

As a parent of a child with complex medical needs,  Ms Drury was often frustrated in her efforts to coordinate her daughter’s care and get access to the information that she needed in order to decide next steps. 

Patients, families and caregivers experience the health-care system differently than policy makers, administrators and health-care professionals, she said. And as such, the unique knowledge of patients and families needs to be incorporated into how health-care policies, programs and decisions are designed and implemented.  

“You need to talk to the people who are living the system, who have to navigate the system. You need to talk to them and find out what is working for them and what is not working for them.  They understand the challenges and barriers best,” she said.

Governance Update

As the College moves toward modernizing its governance structure, the College’s Governance Committee has done a review of our framework and put forward several proposals for preliminary discussion.

During the Council’s discussion on the implications of the Committee’s proposals, it was clear that if they are adopted, they would need to be phased in so as not to destabilize committees. Further analysis of committee membership, potential by-law revisions and implementation is ongoing.

Some of the proposals include limiting committee terms to a maximum of nine years and capping the limit on any combination of Committee or Council membership to 18 years.

At the next meeting, a by-law will come before Council proposing to discontinue the Outreach Committee and have its work absorbed by the Executive Committee mandate.

Posting Criminal Charges and Findings of Guilt from Other Jurisdictions — by-law circulation

Council has proposed a by-law that, if approved, will see criminal charges and findings of guilt from other jurisdictions that occur after January 1, 2019 posted on the public register. 

The intention is to post charges  and  findings  of guilt only for offences that are comparable to offences under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act,  Ontario Health Insurance Act and Criminal Code of Canada.

Currently, only charges, bail conditions and findings of guilt under the Criminal Code of Canada, Controlled Drugs and Substances Act and Ontario Health Insurance Act are posted on the public register. 

The proposed by-law is now being circulated to the profession. Please provide any comments to [email protected].

The Council of the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario proposes to make the following By-law No. 125, after circulation to stakeholders:

By-law No. 125
(1) Paragraph 49(1)19 of By-law No. 1 (the General By-law) is revoked and the following is substituted:

  1. Where there has been a finding of guilt made against a member (a) under the Health Insurance Act (Ontario), on or after June 1, 2015, (b) under any criminal laws of another jurisdiction, on or after January 1, 2019, or (c) under laws of another jurisdiction comparable to the Health Insurance Act (Ontario) or the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (Canada), on or after January 1, 2019 and if the finding and/or appeal is known to the College:

(i) a brief summary of the finding;

(ii) a brief summary of the sentence;

(iii) where the finding is under appeal, a notation that it is under appeal, until the appeal is finally disposed of; and

(iv) the dates of (i)-(iii), if known to the College.

(2) Paragraph 49(1)26 of the By-law No. 1 (the General By-law) is revoked and the following is substituted:

  1. Where a member has been charged with an offence under the Health Insurance Act (Ontario), under any criminal laws of another jurisdiction or under laws of another jurisdiction comparable to the Health Insurance Act (Ontario) or the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (Canada), and the charge is outstanding and is known to the College, the fact and content of the charge and, if known to the College, the date and place of the charge.