As negotiators for the Section of Hospital Medicine during the talks, Dr. DeMott says that his team used the surveys and studies that SHM has pioneered about the value-added contributions of hospitalists to increase awareness with the MOH, the government of British Columbia, and the BCMA about hospitalists’ roles. Dr. Morris notes that B.C. hospitalists, taking the lead from SHM, are now developing their core competencies.
William D. Atchley, Jr., MD, FACP, medical director of Peninsula Inpatient Care Specialists at Sentara Careplex Hospital in Hampton, Va., is a long-time member of the SHM board of directors. He has followed the growth of hospitalists in Canada, and applauds the efforts of those like Echo-Marie Enns, MD, who served as a National Association of Inpatient Physicians (NAIP) Canadian chapter president in Calgary. He has also conducted surveys of Canadian hospitalists. He doubts that a parallel strike situation could develop here in the United States.
“Their situation is unique to Canada,” he says. “From SHM’s perspective, we have always acted as an advocate for hospitalists in Canada and offered whatever we have learned here in the United States to help facilitate their movement. They are still in the process of explaining what a hospitalist is, and explaining to their national medical societies about what hospitalists can do. Their ability to get the message across is just going to take some time.”
Summing up their accomplishments thus far, Dr. DeMott says, “We considered this disagreement a defining moment for hospitalists in this province and quite possibly for [Canada]. We’re not there yet, but we put ourselves on the map. There will likely be another battle on the horizon for us, but hopefully one colored by a much greater appreciation of the expertise we bring to the acute care arena.” TH
Gretchen Henkel writes regularly for The Hospitalist.