June Messenger 2019

College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta CPSA, Messenger


#MeToo & medicine

In 2018, a viral hashtag sparked a social revolution across the globe and influenced the introduction of Bill 21. See how #MeToo impacted medicine in Alberta in this story from the CPSA Report to Albertans.

Read more.


Northern Alberta wildfires information

We at CPSA extend our sympathy and support to those whose families, friends, homes or businesses are affected by the wildfires in Northern Alberta.

If you are a physician who has been impacted or displaced by the wildfires and seek practise advice, please feel welcome to call our 24/7 wildfire emergency line toll-free at 1-888-729-4393, or email info@cpsa.ab.ca.

The latest wildfire emergency updates can be found through the Government of Alberta’s Active Emergency Updates website and through the AHS Wildfire Resource website.

Find additional resources and information from CPSA here.


Have you been asked to be an expert reviewer?

Support your colleagues and CPSA by getting involved

As part of our complaints process, members of the profession may be contacted by a CPSA investigator to provide an independent expert review of the medical care provided by a physician who is the subject of a complaint—a process known as an expert review.

Why accept an invitation to be an expert reviewer?

Being asked to be an expert reviewer demonstrates the member is in good standing with CPSA, has extensive expertise in the clinical area of complaint and is highly regarded amongst the profession. Expert reviewers must be impartial and objective to ensure a fair process for both the respondent physician and complainant and to potentially identify physicians in need of support, guidance and/or remediation.

Participating as an expert reviewer is a vital component of self-regulation and assists CPSA in fulfilling its mandate to protect the public and guide the profession.

What is involved in being an expert reviewer?

Expert reviewers are asked to review the care provided by the respondent physician and prepare a report. In most cases, this process takes the reviewer four to eight hours and is done remotely using the reviewer’s CPSA physician portal to access the complaint documents and relevant patient records.

Expert reviewers receive an honorarium for their time and are eligible to receive continuing professional development (CPD) credits for non-certified peer review activities with the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the College of Family Physicians of Canada.

If a CPSA investigator contacts you regarding an expert review of a complaint, we encourage you to respond in a timely manner and participate when your time allows.

To those members who have already acted as an expert reviewer, we sincerely thank you for your time, expertise and willingness to assist CPSA.


Resources to ensure your practice is up-to-standard

Some recent changes and what’s still to come from CPSA’s Standards of Practice

What’s new?

At their May meeting, CPSA Council voted to adopt as of July 1, 2019, the Canadian Medical Association’s (CMA) new Code of Ethics and Professionalism, which was revised in 2018. This Code replaces the previously-used 2004 version.

We appreciate everyone’s feedback and weighed it carefully before making our recommendation to Council. For more information on consultation statistics and feedback themes, please visit our Consultation Outcomes page.

As mentioned in the invitation to provide feedback, CPSA does not have the ability to edit the CMA's Code of Ethics. However, if there are content changes you would like to see, please forward them to our Standards of Practice Coordinator for future consideration.

What’s coming?

From May 13 – June 3, we invited physicians, partner organizations and the public to participate in a new “pre-consultation” phase for Consultation 017. The intention was to gather member feedback on the standards as they are currently written to determine what is working and what may need to be addressed. We received 98, 61 and 60 responses on each standard respectively; this feedback will inform the draft amendments. The full, formal consultation will take place this summer, where we will ask for your input on amendments to these standards of practice:

Please watch future issues of The Messenger, as well as your email, for your consultation invitation.

If you would like to participate in future pre-consultations, please email consultation@cpsa.ab.ca.

Questions? Contact Chantelle Dick, CPSA Standards of Practice Coordinator, at chantelle.dick@cpsa.ab.ca.


Receive complete & appropriate referrals by updating your Alberta Referral Directory (ARD) consulting physician profile!

What is the ARD?

The ARD is Alberta’s centralized source for specialist referral information, designed to help reduce work load burden, save time, reduce operating costs and improve patient satisfaction and safety. The directory contains important referral information, including:

  • areas of specialty;
  • site-of-service delivery;
  • associated services;
  • contact information;
  • referral guidelines;
  • referral forms; and
  • detailed instructions to facilitate referral acceptance without delay.

Why use the ARD?

Having a single source of up-to-date referral information increases the likelihood of receiving appropriate referrals with completed investigations and spending less time answering phone calls and redirecting referrals. It also provides a place to document your compliance with our standard of practice on Referral Consultation.

Have you updated your ARD consulting physician profile?

If you haven’t already, we encourage you to take a moment to complete your profile and link it to the places you practise by visiting albertareferraldirectory.ca and selecting “Edit your ARD profile.” By keeping your information current, not only are you are helping your colleagues by making the referral process easy, you’re also ensuring good and timely care for Albertans.

Have you had a great experience using the ARD? We want to hear about it! Tell us your story by writing to info@cpsa.ab.ca.