News & Features

Increasing The Joy In Our Work

A message from Dr. Jennifer YoungJennifer-2_edited1

In her latest President's Message, Dr. Jennifer Young discusses finding joy in being a family physician, and addresses the important aspect of self-care during times of significant burnout among physicians. 

Dr. Young offers some advice based on her own experience and speaks to what has helped her find balance, joy and meaning in her work. 


Read previous President's Messages

Ontario Health Teams - More Details, Where To Next?

A message from Dr. Jennifer YoungJennifer-2_edited1

In her latest President's Message, Dr. Jennifer Young discusses the new Guidance Document for the Ontario Health Teams (OHTs), where to from here, and what it means for you in your practice. 

Dr. Young reinforces that in this time of change and transition, what remains constant is the OCFP's commitment to the imperative that no practice - and subsequently no patient - is left behind. 


Read previous President's Messages

OCFP Response to Bill 74

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Evidence highly suggests that successful reforms need to be anchored in a robust primary care sector, and led by family physicians. The OCFP has provided a written submission to the Legislative Assembly's Standing Committee on Social Policy regarding Bill 74: The People's Health Care Act, 2019.

We strongly support Bill 74's commitment to placing the patient at the centre of a connected care system in communities across the province. Better integration of primary care with mental health and addictions, home and community care and hospitals in the Patient's Medical Neighbourhood will result in better outcomes. 

We provided five key recommendations including the need for family physician leadership and co-design, as well as the inclusion of family physicians and their patients - regardless of practice model - to benefit from access to core, team-based resources.   

Change is Coming – What Does it Mean for You?

A message from Dr. Jennifer YoungJennifer-2_edited1

In her latest President's Message, Dr. Jennifer Young addresses what we know so far about the coming changes from the Ontario government's health reform and how this may affect family doctors.

Dr. Young discusses what we still need to know and how we are supporting you - our Members - to ensure the essential role of family physicians is both recognized and reflected in the changes ahead.


Read previous President's Messages

New Contract for Ontario Doctors

Includes new working groups to address pressing issues
 
Following the conclusion of the first phase of the arbitration process between the Ontario Medical Association (OMA) and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC), the award has been rendered by the Board of Arbitration. Along with mandated annual fee increases for doctors, no changes to any Patient Enrollment Models including FHOs, and other provisions, the new contract also sets up working groups to tackle some of the known issues - notably access in primary care, and inappropriate/overused medical services.
Read more, including the implications of this new agreement for family doctors, below:

Advocating for a National Licensing Standard and Fees

Map of Canada illustrationWith the Federation of Medical Regulatory Authorities of Canada exploring the possibility of national licensure, the OCFP has reached out to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) – a participant at that table – offering our support in advancing this important issue.
 
The benefits of harmonizing medical licensing are clear. In addition to reducing onerous paperwork and costly fees, easing inter-provincial mobility through a national license can support locums in under-serviced areas, doctors seeking coverage for a temporary absence, doctors assuming the practice of a retiring physician, and create a larger pool for recruitment by smaller communities. As well, a physician who is censured in one jurisdiction could not move to another and practice, contributing to patient safety.
 
We look forward to working with the CPSO and other stakeholders to advance this important issue, and will continue to monitor and report any progress.

Family Docs: The Early Years

A four-part podcast series sharing insights on work-life balance, transitioning to practice, and more

In our fourth and final episode of The OCFP's Early Years in Practice Committee member, Dr. Jillie Reston speaks with Dr. Elaine Blau about the importance of leadership. Their conversation covers the skills and qualities of a good leader, the importance of self-awareness, the challenges of leadership, and other tips on how to lead. 


Listen to the previous episode and download the show notes here.


Reporting required by March 1, 2019 for 2018 health data privacy breaches

image of lock over numeric code to symbolize data and protectionAccording to new rules within the Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA), physicians, along with various other healthcare providers, are now required to notify the Information and Privacy Commissioner of Ontario about any health privacy breaches on an annual basis. Data breaches include health information that was stolen, lost, used without authority, and/or disclosed without authority.

To permit the recording and reporting of data breaches for the 2018 calendar year, physicians are legally required to submit a record of any data breaches to the Information Privacy Commissioner through the statistics submission website by Friday, March 1, 2019. If you experienced no health privacy breaches during 2018, no report is required. Please note that submissions by mail or fax will not be accepted.

For additional information, to register/create your account and submit your annual health information breach statistics, click here.

See the OCFP's Response to the CPSO's Continuity of Care Policy


image of CPSO's Community of Care Consultation graphic
The College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario (CPSO) has concluded consultations on its draft umbrella Continuity of Care Policy, comprised of policies regarding availability and coverage, managing tests, transitions in care, and walk-in clinics.
 
To reflect the family physician perspective, and help shape our organizational response to the CPSO, we conducted our own consultation with members as well. Our thanks to all of you who shared your perspectives.

The OCFP’s response, submitted to the CPSO on Dec. 7, can be read here.

New Reporting Obligations for MAiD

Effective Nov. 1, 2018, the Government of Canada will implement new reporting requirements for physicians, nurse practitioners and pharmacists around medical assistance in dying (MAiD) requests. Under the new regulations any written requests for MAiD will require practitioners to report additional information - and include penalties for failing to provide this information. 
 
Full regulation changes and supporting documents are included on the OCFP's Medical Assistance in Dying Resource Page.

OHIP+ Updates

  • OHIP+ Children and Youth Pharmacare - December 21, 2017

  • OHIP+ Reminder - July 1 Deadline for Exceptional Access Program (EAP) Requests - June 21, 2018

  • Ontario Government Announces Changes to OHIP+

Ontario’s newly elected government puts immunization reporting requirements on hold

No July 1 implementation required by family physicians
June 20, 2018

Implementation of proposed changes to the Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA) and regulations are on hold. The changes would have required family physicians to report immunizations provided to children for nine designated diseases to local public health units starting July 1, 2018.
 
As noted in our June 15 member communication, the OCFP and other member-based organizations heard many concerns from family physicians about how these new reporting requirements would impact workload. Those concerns, among others, were shared with the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC).
 
On June 20, Premier-Designate Doug Ford communicated that the new reporting requirements are on pause. He has committed the new minister responsible for health, once appointed, to work with the OMA to “prioritize an acceptable solution”. The OCFP will also continue to collaborate with the OMA and the MOHLTC while it works toward the integration of immunization records with public health units.

CPSO/CFPC Joint Statement - Revised Guidance for Emergency Medicine in Rural Practice

June 18, 2018

After working closely with the CFPC, and hearing from many family physicians, the CPSO is amending its document: Expectations of Physicians Not Certified in Emergency Medicine Intending to Include Emergency Medicine As Part of Their Rural Practice - Changing Scope of Practice Process. The expectations document will recognize the experience family physicians receive in urban emergency departments as meeting the necessary criteria to include emergency medicine in a rural practice; including new graduates of a family medicine residency program. 

Read the full joint statement as well as the revised guidance document and FAQs here:

Previous Guidance for Emergency Medicine in Rural Practice Updates

2017 Members' Forum Highlights

The OCFP's 2017 Members' Forum focused on supports for family physicians in Managing Pain and Addressing Opioids. Taking place in Toronto on Nov. 24, the event featured a panel of leading experts from across the health system, to share the latest information on these crucial issues. 

See the presentation slides.

We Want to Hear From You

More and more, the OCFP is shaping our website to keep members aware of our activities and those of others. We welcome suggestions for article topics, online resources and tools that would be of interest to our members. Please email suggestions to newsletter_ocfp@cfpc.ca.