In today’s message you will find:
- Get your Tickets for GALA and AGM Next Week!
- Submissions Due Thursday on Government Regulations
- National Report Confirms Growing Wait Times
- Severe Acute Hepatitis
- Celebrate National Nursing Week
- Join us at the Pride Parade, June 5!
- Endoscopy Referral Form Reminder
- New Group CME Grants Available!
Gala and AGM Next Week!
Join over 400 others at our Annual Awards Gala next Thursday, May 19! Whether or not you can join the Gala, please consider attending our AGM either in person or virtually.
The Gala will be held at the RBC Convention Centre and starts at 6PM with a cocktail reception, followed by a gourmet dinner and program beginning at 7PM. At the Gala, you’ll hear from incoming Doctors Manitoba President Dr. Candace Bradshaw about the year ahead, as well as from Dr. Smart from the CMA. We will also celebrate each of our eight extraordinary 2022 physician award winners.
Our 114th Annual General Meeting will happen right before the Gala, starting at 5PM. We encourage you to attend to learn more about your Association and the priorities for the year ahead, as well as the official announcement of the President-Elect who will serve as President in 2023 – 24! You can attend the AGM in-person, or join us virtually via Zoom.
- Gala ticket orders: Please order your Gala tickets here, including tickets for you and your guests, a table, and the option of sponsoring medical learners to attend as well.
- AGM registration: Learn more about the AGM here, and click here to register for in-person or virtual attendance.
- Hotel for Rural/Northern Physicians Held Until May 12: We have held a limited number of hotel rooms for physicians joining us from out-of-town at the Delta Hotel, which is connected to the RBC Convention Centre. Learn more and book online here.
We have finalized COVID precautions for the Gala and AGM in consultation with several physicians, including those with infectious disease and public health expertise.
- Convention Centre staff are required to wear masks, be vaccinated, and not come to work if they have symptoms or a potential exposure
- Capacity will be limited to about 50%
- There will be active ventilation with CO2 monitoring
All guests are expected to:
- Self-screen for symptoms and stay home if ill
- Wear a mask, unless actively eating or drinking, seated at your table, or taking a photo
- Be fully vaccinated
- Respect other guests, including those who may have invisible risk factors
The Gala is the signature annual event for physicians, offering a great opportunity to reconnect with colleagues, meet new ones, and celebrate the very best of the medical profession. Thank you to MD Financial and Scotiabank, our presenting sponsors, as well as as our Platinum sponsor Bokhaut Accounting.
Submissions Due Thursday on Government Regulations
We are encouraging physicians to submit feedback by tomorrow (May 12) on a proposed government regulation that could add more paperwork and administrative burden to physicians. The proposed regulation outlines over 20 record-keeping requirements and the intent appears singularly focused on making it easier for physician billing auditors.
You can read our earlier analysis here for further background. You can also see our President Dr. Kristjan Thompson talking about our concerns on CityNews here.
To submit feedback:
- Go to this government consultation page.
- You will need to register to comment. Start by clicking “log in” near top right and then clicking “register.”
- On the regulation consultation page, click “Make a comment” on the right side.
- Feel free to copy and paste your submission into an email and send to us at email@example.com.
Sample submission letter (adapt and edit as appropriate)
To Whom it May Concern:
I am a physician practicing in the community of ________________. I practice in the area of ___________________ and have provided medical care in Manitoba for ______ years.
I have serious concerns respecting the proposed Regulation on Record Keeping. The regulation will negatively impact patient care by adding new administrative requirements into my practice.
The consultation documents claim there there will be“no additional administrative burden” on physicians, but this is simply not true. The Regulation will increase the administrative record-keeping burden in my practice without increasing or improving patient care. Instead, the increased administrative burden will reduce the number of patients I am able to see each day.
Physicians already follow very detailed and rigorous documentation requirements, both from our regulator CPSM, and under the Physician Manual from Manitoba Health. These requirements already provide the documentation necessary for patient care and to justify the claims I submit to Manitoba Health. As a physician, I take very seriously my obligations to maintain accurate patient records and to submit valid claims for remuneration.
To be honest, it seems like the sole reason for these new regulations is to make the job easier for medical claims auditors when reviewing physician billings. From what I understand, the Auditor General reviewed physician billings recently and found that Manitoba Health has all of the necessary legal authority to review patient billings, and suggested improving the training for the auditors who often lack a background in health care or medicine. Rather than adding new regulations and red tape, I would suggest the government instead pursue better training for the auditors so they are able to understand the detailed and comprehensive documentation that already exists.
This proposed Regulation does not advance patient care and has the very real risk of resulting in less patient care being available. This comes at a time that physicians are trying to catch up on care that has been disrupted or put on hold during the pandemic.
With this in mind, I respectfully request that Manitoba Health withdraw this regulation.
National Report Confirms Growing Wait Times
A new report out yesterday from the Canadian Institute for Health Information is shedding new light on how wait times for different medical procedures were impacted during the pandemic. The report, Wait Times for Priority Procedures, provides comprehensive information about wait times current to fall 2021 for a variety of diagnostic tests, surgeries and other procedures.
For some life-saving procedures, such as radiation therapy and hip fracture repair, Manitoba was able to maintain strong performance during the pandemic. For many other procedures, however, our wait times grew and are now among the worst in Canada. This includes cataract surgery, hip and knee replacements, MRIs and CT scans.
You can see our story and full analysis here.
Doctors Manitoba offered a technical briefing for journalists to help shine as spotlight on Manitoba’s results, and ophthalmologist Dr. Jennifer Rahman met reporters to talk about the impact on her patients. Our efforts yesterday translated into top stories in the news. This was all part of our continued advocacy on the pandemic backlog, which we continue to hear from physicians as one of their top concerns.
In the meantime, we continue to connect with the Diagnostic and Surgical Task Force and other officials to press for more capacity. Do you have ideas that could start now to help help tackle the backlog? Please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Severe Acute Hepatitis
Manitoba has one case of severe acute hepatitis of unknown origin, a mysterious condition that has been identified in children in a number of countries. No further details were available on the Manitoba case.
Late this afternoon, Manitoba Public Health issued a bulletin about the condition. Manitoba Health is recommending that pediatric patients with acute, severe hepatitis should be referred to Pediatric Gastroenterology and Pediatric Infectious Diseases for assessment and recommendation of appropriate investigations for infectious and non-infectious causes based on their presentation and clinical exposure history. Physicians involved in any case that meets the working definition should submit a clinical notification form.
Earlier this week, Sick Children in Toronto confirmed they have seen seven cases since October in children between one month and 16 years or age. The U.S. CDC confirmed Friday it has identified 109 cases across the U.S., and 14 per cent of those children needed liver transplants. Five of them died.
The World Health Organization confirmed 348 probable cases of acute hepatitis among children earlier this week. This includes 163 cases in the UK, the largest of any country.
Researchers are probing potential causes, including links to infections from an adenovirus or SARS-COV‑2. The WHO update noted a strong correlation has been found with adenovirus, with over 70 per cent of the U.K.’s cases tested positive for adenovirus.
Chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam said Friday that the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) has contacted its 17 pediatric centres across the country to try to get a better understanding of the situation. She noted that before the pandemic, about half of severe hepatitis cases among children had no known cause. “We do not know if we are seeing an increase in the number of cases of acute hepatitis of unknown cause in children,” she explained. “More information is needed to assess the situation and any potential risks to people in Canada.”
Resources & Further Reading
- Public Health will be setting up a resource page here.
- The UK Health Security Agency has created a resource page with further information, including guidance for clinicians.
- World Health Organization Outbreak News
Celebrate National Nursing Week
This week is National Nursing Week, and today is National Indigenous Nurses Day. Please take some time this week to thank the nurses you work with. You can also post a message of appreciation on social media for the nurses who #AnswerTheCall, or share our post.
Join us at the Pride Parade!
This year is the 35th anniversary of the Winnipeg Pride festival and Winnipeg is proudly hosting the national Fierté Canada Pride celebration too. For the first time in Doctors Manitoba’s 114-year history, the organization will participate in the Pride Parade and Rally, on June 5.
We are inviting members and family members to join us as we support and celebrate physicians, medical learners and all Manitobans from the 2SLGBTQ+ community. It’s also important to demonstrate our commitment to inclusion and allyship. Sign up to join us! Learn more about the parade and other events here.
Endoscopy Referral Form Reminder
Beginning Monday, May 16, 2022, Shared Health will only accept the new revised Provincial Endoscopy Intake Referral Form.
There is an updated version of the forms, which can be found on Shared Health Provincial Clinical Project Standards.
This form is also being provided to the EMR vendors and they have been requested to develop it for you to download. Please check with your EMR vendor to assist you in finding this form.
New Group CME Grants Available!
We have introduced a new grant initiative, offering up to $20,000 for projects that deliver continuing medical education to a group or team of physicians in Manitoba. Any eligible physician in Manitoba can apply.
The first call for grant applications is now open, with applications due by May 23, 2022. The grants can cover eligible expenses for accredited education that occurs in Manitoba before the end of 2022. Funds can be used to cover accreditation costs, speaker fees and accommodation or travel or other expenses necessary to deliver the education to a group or team of physicians.
You can learn more about the new CME grant initiative here, and contact Barry Hallman at email@example.com for more information.