Dr. Shahana Nathwani
Dr. Shahana Nathwani has been a part of the College of Family Physicians (CFPC) since medical school, an opportunity she’s grateful for.
As a resident, I am a member of the BC College as a means of getting mentorship. It’s the easiest, most valuable way for me to meet other physicians as well as those working in health care administration. I am inspired by the work they are doing at both a clinical and a managerial level.I’ve actually been involved in the College for a long time.
In medical school, I was very fortunate to represent the Family Medicine Interest Group (FMIG) at the National College of Family Physicians. In this role, I was required to travel to Ontario periodically to participate in board meetings, where I often was the youngest and least experienced person in the room. Once I got over my nerves, I realized how lucky I was to be a part of these influential discussions. I remember one particular occasion at a strategic retreat where we were discussing a relatively new concept at the time called the “medical home.” Now, the patient’s medical home is not just well known terminology but involves functioning entities delivering quality medical care.Medical school and residency are a time to acquire a breadth of required clinical knowledge. However, little time is spent understanding the current and relevant issues facing the profession that you soon are going to be a part of. I think it is extremely important for all physicians, especially new grads like me, to be able to better articulate where we see family medicine in the next 10-20 years and take the necessary steps to ensure this is a tangible goal.Participating in the College enables us to do that.I would encourage others to become members and to get involved in the College’s work if they have the time and ability to do so. It’s such an important organization, working to promote family medicine and acting as a voice for both physicians and patients. So much goes on behind the scenes that many aren’t aware of.
Dr. Marjorie Docherty
As someone who is passionate about teaching and education, Kelowna family physician Dr. Marjorie Docherty particularly appreciates the educational roles BCCFP plays.
In addition to my role as a full-service family physician, I have been involved in teaching since my graduation from medical school. I’m a faculty member of the Rural Family Practice residency program and hold the rank of clinical professor at UBC.
I’m pretty passionate about teaching, so it’s probably no surprise that one of the things I most appreciate about BCCFP is the work it does to help educate people about the value of family medicine. I believe it’s important for all of us to be members of the College and to support this effort to communicate to our patients and others in the health care system that family doctors are medical specialists, with specialized training and education. I think it’s also important that BCCFP is a professional body – as opposed to a negotiating body.This distinction allows the organization to focus on the specialized needs of family physicians, including education. The BCCFP CME programs help us to develop new clinical skills and to grow as physicians. The annual conferences are a chance to learn collaboratively, which I’m a big believer in, and to develop collegiality with our colleagues. Education is empowering, and I often tell medical students and residents that “it takes as long as it takes.” It’s in working together that we truly learn and grow.
Dr. Bill Ehman
Nanaimo’s Dr. Bill Ehman values BCCFP’s strong support for obstetrical care by family physicians.
As a full-service family physician I do pretty much everything, but my particular areas of interest are maternity and newborn care. For this reason, I’ve been involved with the College for about 15 years, representing both BC and Alberta on its Maternity and Newborn Care Program Committee.
I’ve come to appreciate the role the College plays in supporting and promoting family practice. As doctors, we aren’t always good at promoting what we have to offer. For instance, we are the ideal providers of comprehensive care for women who are pregnant. This is a very important distinction; whereas other specialists might offer care only for pregnant women, family physicians provide care for women who are pregnant -before, during and after their pregnancies.The Colleges recognizes this special role that family doctors play, and supports us in doing so. They promote the value and services of family medicine to patients and other physicians. They also develop training. They’ve committed resources to define the important competencies of family doctors – including basic maternity and newborn care – and ensure all family physician residents receive training that enables them to offer comprehensive care. It’s a role that’s unique to the College and critical to the training of future family doctors.
Dr. Nirvair Levitt
Dr. Nirvair Levitt has seen first-hand the many important roles played by BCCFP.
I’ve been involved with the College of Family Physicians for about 17 years, helping develop physician exams and sitting for a time on the executive committee.
I’ve come to realize that, as physicians, we can get pretty absorbed in the work we are doing day in, day out, and lose sight of the bigger picture. That’s why BCCFP is so valuable to us – it plays a vital role that benefits the whole health care system in British Columbia, including patient care as well as the well-being of physicians. The College wears many important hats.Through its CME courses, it helps family doctors maintain a high standard of care for their patients. By promoting family medicine, it helps attract new medical students to family practice. The College also promotes research, and when a new need is identified in the health care system it develops special modules for family doctors, like the one for public mental health. And the College is a leader in transforming healthcare. For example, at the national level it developed the Patient Medical Home model which is now envied and emulated by many other jurisdictions.
Dr. Luke Tse
International Medical Graduate and Northern BC physician Dr. Luke Tse values BCCFP’s CME offerings.
I’ve been a member of the College since I was a resident, training at St. Paul’s Hospital as part of the International Medical Graduate (IMG) program. Since 2010 I’ve been practicing in Prince Rupert, and I do everything from maternity to emergency medicine as well as being the director of long term care at the residential facility here and the only GP oncologist in our community.
I think the College does a good job promoting primary health care in BC. Besides their awards program, I most appreciate the BCCFP’s CME program, because it’s very good at offering topics that are relevant to general practitioners. Whereas some CME is highly specialized, the College does a good job of covering the most relevant, current hot topics in general family practice.