President Dr. Marjorie Docherty shares her message, alongside a special video of thanks featuring some familiar faces!
I was in awe when I read the many nominations we received for this year’s BCCFP awards. From our residents starting out their careers in family medicine, to our colleagues nearing retirement, there is such a wealth of diverse talent and skill among the family physicians in our province.
There have been many challenges for all of us over the past year and sometimes we feel our voice and desire to contribute to public health planning go unheard. In the interests of best patient care, family physicians have persisted in keeping up to date with virus and vaccine studies, educating their patients, addressing vaccine hesitancy, and identifying those in need. I have watched colleagues go through their EMR lists to ensure the elderly, isolated and chronically ill receive reach-out calls or visits. I see family physicians who, despite the pressures on their own time, have empathy for the pandemic-restricted clinical learning of our medical students and residents and continue to pass on their knowledge to the next generation of physicians.
We go through our days in uncomfortable masks and face shields, and we struggle with changes in our clinical interaction with patients as a result of pandemic restrictions. We work long hours, making many contributions in the office and the community while seeing less of our loved ones. Family physicians continue to be committed to protecting the longitudinal relationships that we have the privilege of enjoying with our patients and, often, their extended families.
I know the almost 400 nomination letters we received (a record number!) provide only a small window into the spirit and talent of family physicians in every community. Nominators told us stories of kindness, professionalism, support of colleagues and patients, ingenuity in clinical practice, and leadership in health care. Coupled with the amazing and abundant accounts of family physicians’ responses to the pandemic, there is a lot to give us pride.
You all have made a huge difference to patients during these difficult times. On BC Family Doctor Day, take a moment to be kind to yourself, to recognize what you have achieved, and to know you really have had a positive impact on many lives over the past year. The phrase patients most commonly say at the end of appointments seems to be, “thank you for all you do.” I would echo that loudly.
Be well, stay well, and please accept our gratitude, thanks and pride in you, the family physicians of BC.
Marjorie Docherty, CCFP, FCFP