Competency-based training and prescription drug shortages expected to headline discussions
OTTAWA, Oct. 11, 2012 /CNW/ - Rethinking how physicians and surgeons are trained will be among the primary themes discussed when more than 1,000 doctors and medical educators from around the world convene in Ottawa for the 2012 International Conference on Residency Education (ICRE) from October 18-20.
Hosted annually by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, the theme of this year's conference is Milestones in Residency Education: Competencies, Controversies and Challenges.
"We are at a critical stage in medical education," says Dr. Jason R. Frank, Chair of ICRE and Royal College Director of Education. "With health care costs rising and demands for access to care growing, it is urgent that we find new and innovative training solutions for the medical specialists, researchers and teachers needed by our communities. As excellent as our medical education system is, what worked in the past doesn't work anymore."
"Today, our training system focuses too much on time spent in training, when it is a physician's ability that matters most. One of the highlights of the conference will be a discussion about training residents using a new model, where learning is organized less on time spent learning and more on the skills and abilities that have been mastered."
A conference discussion on new approaches to medical trainee duty hours could also change the complexion of medical residency education and the way health care is delivered to Canadians in future. Citing resident and patient safety concerns, Quebec recently reduced from 24 to 16 the number of consecutive hours residents are allowed to work on wards.
"There is no consensus in Canada yet about resident duty hours," says Dr. Kevin Imrie, a Physician-in-Chief at Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Royal College Vice-President of Education. In May of this year, the Royal College and eight stakeholders launched a project to establish pan-Canadian standards. "The United States and the European Union have both significantly reduced the work hours of residents in recent years. Until recently in Canada, separate conversations on this important topic have been held in different provinces and regions."
"The more than 6,000 residents being trained in clinics and hospitals across our country provide an invaluable amount of direct patient care. Fatigue, work hour restrictions, and handovers between doctors can all have an impact on the health and safety of both the resident and the patient. We look forward to hearing diverse perspectives as we work towards building a Canadian consensus."
ICRE 2012 will also facilitate discussions by world-class experts on a range of other timely issues, including the persistent prescription drug shortage and the growing use of social media in medical education.
"ICRE 2012 promises to be our most important conference yet," says Dr. Andrée Boucher, co-chair of ICRE 2012 and Vice-Dean of Medical Education and Continuing Professional Development at Université de Montréal. "Participants return to this conference every year because medical education continuously faces new challenges, and because the Royal College is an acknowledged global leader in facilitating discussion and innovation."
About ICRE and the Royal College
ICRE is the largest conference in the world devoted exclusively to residency education. This year, the conference will take place in Ottawa at the Ottawa Convention Centre from October 18 to 20, 2012. ICRE is hosted by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, Canada's home for specialty medicine. With more than 42,000 members in 87 countries, the Royal College contributes to improving the health of Canadians by setting the highest standards for specialty medical education and is a trusted partner in advancing sound health and public policy.
SOURCE: ROYAL COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS AND SURGEONS OF CANADA
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