The desire to control health care costs in Canada has led to reductions in postgraduate training posts and physician immigration. To determine the possible effects of these cutbacks on pediatric manpower, a country-wide study was conducted to assess the practice patterns and productivity of Canadian pediatricians. Of the 1960 pediatricians in Canada, 69% completed and returned our questionnaire. Practice descriptions were as follows: 37% practice primary, 25% secondary, and 38% tertiary care. A total of 70% of Canadian pediatricians are men, although this will change with time because 49% of pediatricians younger than 35 years of age are women. Clinical productivity was assessed by five indices: number of clinical hours, patients seen, consultations provided, and hours on call per week, and number of hospital admissions per year. Younger pediatricians were significantly less clinically productive than older pediatricians. Age-matched groups of female pediatricians were significantly less clinically productive than their male counterparts in three of the five indices assessed. Overall, female pediatricians were significantly more likely to work part-time than were male pediatricians (22% vs 16%, P less than .05). When the clinical productivity of part-time pediatricians was assessed, there was no male to female difference noted. However, among full-time pediatricians, men worked significantly more clinical hours per week and saw significantly more patients than did women (P less than .05). According to results, women pediatricians were more satisfied with their practice now than when starting practice than were men (47% vs 41%).(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
In an effort to evaluate the perceived utility of specific Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC) urology residency training objectives we conducted a survey of the practicing urologists of British Columbia (BC).
A two page semi-structured survey was designed. Validity was evaluated for clarity, content and ease of completion. The survey was mailed-out to all 61 practicing urologists in BC. The survey population was divided into urban, rural, and academic according to location of practice.
Survey response rate was 79% with varying subgroup rates: urban-69% (20/29), rural-94% (17/18) and academic 86% (12/14). Specific clinical components of training were rated as "useful" by the majority of all respondents: pediatric urology (93%), laparoscopy (88%), TRUS (77%), percutaneous renal access (74%), urethral surgery (72%), microsurgery (62%). Renal transplantation was rated "not useful" by 74% of respondents. TRUS, percutaneous renal access and adrenal surgery were perceived as useful by the majority of those practicing in rural and non-academic urban centers compared to those in academic centers where the majority rated these skills as "not useful". Virtually all non-clinical components of training were rated as "useful". The majority of respondents felt that residency training prepared them for the following challenges: accepting responsibility for patient care, assessing scientific literature, ethical decision-making and communication. The majority of respondents felt that residency did not prepare them for the following challenges: time and office management, hospital administration and providing care within a constrained system.
Specific clinical and non-clinical areas of training have high perceived utility in all settings of practice. Certain clinical components of training have high perceived utility only in specific settings of practice. There are many non-clinical components of practice, which are perceived to be important, but for which BC urologists feel inadequately prepared for by their residency training programs. If consistent across Canada, these findings may facilitate a rational approach to the modification of the objectives for urology residency training.
To assess challenges in providing palliative care in long-term care (LTC) facilities from the perspective of medical directors.
Cross-sectional mailed survey. A questionnaire was developed, reviewed, pilot-tested, and sent to 450 medical directors representing 531 LTC facilities. Responses were rated on 2 different 5-point scales. Descriptive analyses were conducted on all responses.
All licensed LTC facilities in Ontario with designated medical directors.
Medical directors in the facilities.
Demographic and practice characteristics of physicians and facilities, importance of potential barriers to providing palliative care, strategies that could be helpful in providing palliative care, and the kind of training in palliative care respondents had received.
Two hundred seventy-five medical directors (61%) representing 302 LTC facilities (57%) responded to the survey. Potential barriers to providing palliative care were clustered into 3 groups: facility staff's capacity to provide palliative care, education and support, and the need for external resources. Two thirds of respondents (67.1%) reported that inadequate staffing in their facilities was an important barrier to providing palliative care. Other barriers included inadequate financial reimbursement from the Ontario Health Insurance Program (58.5%), the heavy time commitment required (47.3%), and the lack of equipment in facilities (42.5%). No statistically significant relationship was found between geographic location or profit status of facilities and barriers to providing palliative care. Strategies respondents would use to improve provision of palliative care included continuing medical education (80.0%), protocols for assessing and monitoring pain (77.7%), finding ways to increase financial reimbursement for managing palliative care residents (72.1%), providing educational material for facility staff (70.7%), and providing practice guidelines related to assessing and managing palliative care patients (67.8%).
Medical directors in our study reported that their LTC facilities were inadequately staffed and lacked equipment. The study also highlighted the specialized role of medical directors, who identified continuing medical education as a key strategy for improving provision of palliative care.
In the spring of 1986 burnout and its relation to social and physical environments and the nature of work were studied using a questionnaire sent to a sample of 232 dentists aged under 62 living in the province of Uusimaa, Finland. Most male and female dentists (71 and 67%, respectively) were working in group practices and most (88%) employed an assistant. Professional problems were generally (71%) solved by consulting colleagues. Half of those responding were very satisfied with their relationship to other dental staff. All but 9% of dentists experienced problems in their physical working environments and 22% felt that their uncomfortable working posture interfered significantly with job satisfaction. Women reported chronic work-related conditions diagnosed by a physician more often than men (21 vs. 10%, respectively). At the time of the study, most dentists were experiencing pain in connection with work on patients and 41% of women and 59% of men were experiencing occupational stress. Most dentists experienced at least temporary psychological fatigue as a result of their work and almost half were exhausted at the end of each day. Despite this, most enjoyed working with patients and were enthusiastic about their work. Three aspects of burnout emerged on factor analysis: psychological fatigue, loss of enjoyment of work, and hardening. One third of dentists experienced some hardening and ceased to care greatly what happened to some of their patients. Of the factors associated with working environments, only dissatisfaction with relationships with patients, problems relating to the physical environment and poor working posture significantly increased burnout.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS)
This study was undertaken with the objective of assessing current sources of information for anaesthesia Physician Resource Planning (PRP). Four major data bases, the annual reports of Health and Welfare Canada (H&W), the education statistics from the Canadian Post-M.D. Education Registry (CAPER), the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPSC) and the Physician Resource Data System of the Canadian Medical Association (PRDS), were examined for the period 1982 to 1991. The ratio of the number of surgical (S) to anaesthesia (A) clinicians decreased over this period despite an increase in the S:A ratios for trainees and certificants. The number of female anaesthetists has progressively increased. A steady decline in the number of rural anaesthetists has occurred. Age distribution of active certified anaesthetists revealed marked inter-regional differences. Little change was noted in the total mean hours worked per week. Each database provided valuable, but limited, data. The PRDS data is useful in assessing trends (age, sex and practice activity). Information provided by H&W tends to underestimate anaesthesia resource information by at least 10%. While information obtained from RCPSC and CAPER is accurate, the current mode of presentation of data limits their usefulness. Integrating data from all the databases appears to provide a meaningful assessment for PRP rather than assessing each database in isolation. Interpretation of the information and its value must take into account the limitations of the data being provided. Assessing present and planning future needs based on the current information structure will prove extremely difficult.
The present study sheds some light on how and why Canadian family physicians offer complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) services to their patients. Our results suggest that organizational settings discourage physicians from offering CAM, while solo clinics are most conducive. Physicians trained in French-language medical schools are less likely than their English-language trained colleagues to offer CAM services, and those in British Columbia are the most likely to do so. Provincial differences do not appear to be related to the presence or absence of "negative proof" legislation that is considered to facilitate CAM provision by physicians.
The authors conducted a questionnaire survey of health care managers in Canada to learn more about their careers, work experiences and attitudes; and to determine whether their careers differed by such factors as sector of employment, gender, years of experience, education and family status. Major findings include: in teaching and community hospitals, men are more likely to fill chief executive officer (CEO) positions and women tend to be in middle management positions. More men than women in CEO positions reported incomes in the top range ($105,000). Men in CEO and senior management positions are more likely to be married and have children under 16 years of age living at home. Slightly more women than men were clinicians before becoming managers. Most respondents aspired to CEO or senior management positions. Implications for human resources practices are discussed.
Historically, children with mild bilateral and unilateral hearing loss have been reported to experience difficulties related to language and academic functioning. In the context of Universal Newborn Hearing Screening, there is an increasing focus on determining optimal clinical interventions for this population of children. The objectives of this study were to determine the prevalence of mild bilateral or unilateral hearing loss identified in a clinical population from 1990 to 2006 and to document clinical practices related to recommendations and uptake of amplification.
This population-based study consisted of a detailed retrospective chart review of all children identified with mild bilateral or unilateral hearing loss in a Canadian pediatric center between 1990 and 2006. Hearing loss and patient characteristics were extracted to describe the clinical population. Amplification recommendations and uptake of amplification were documented. Clinical decisions regarding amplification practices were explored as a function of age of identification and severity of hearing loss.
A total of 670 children were identified with permanent hearing loss during the 16-yr study period, of which 291 were presented with a mild bilateral or unilateral hearing loss. Detailed reviews of the 255 available medical charts showed that at diagnosis, 178 children presented with mild bilateral, 31 with mild bilateral high frequency, and 46 with unilateral hearing loss. Eighty percent of children had been referred through conventional medical processes before the implementation of universal hearing screening and 20% had been exposed to screening. The average age of identification for the entire group was 54.2 mos (interquartile range, 30.1 to 76.9 mos). Amplification was prescribed for 91.4% of children but there was considerable delay from confirmation of hearing loss to amplification for both children identified with and without screening. Overall, 54.1% received an initial recommendation for amplification and a further 37.3% received a recommendation more than 3 mos after hearing loss confirmation. Practice patterns varied according to category of hearing loss with 60.1% of children with mild bilateral hearing loss receiving an initial recommendation compared with 26.1% of those with unilateral hearing loss. Clinical decision making relative to amplification needs was also changed during the course of audiologic care. The decision to amplify was significantly related to age at identification and degree of hearing loss in the mild bilateral group but not in the unilateral group. Although, more than 90% of children received a recommendation for amplification, chart documentation revealed that less than two thirds of children consistently used their amplification devices. Use of amplification did not vary among children with mild bilateral, mild bilateral high frequency, and unilateral hearing loss.
: This research suggests that there is considerable uncertainty related to clinical recommendations of intervention for this population of children. The impact of parental indecision regarding the benefits of amplification is unknown. Further studies are required to document the potential benefits and factors affecting amplification recommendations and use in the current practice environment where children with mild bilateral or unilateral hearing loss are identified early through newborn hearing screening.
To examine the extent to which physician's sex explains variation in the activity level and service intensity of a cohort of physicians in each of five medical fields after other sources of variation are taken into account.
Data from the Ontario Ministry of Health (MOH) and the CMA were analysed by means of multivariate regression techniques for panel data.
A total of 137 dermatologists, 974 general internists, 330 pediatricians and 941 psychiatrists and a random sample of 2771 family physicians and general practitioners who met the eligibility criteria. Physicians were eligible if they billed the MOH for at least three quarters in 1983, did not bill as a medical laboratory director, provided direct patient care, did not have an alternative funding arrangement with the MOH, remained in the same specialty throughout the study period (1983-90) and billed from an Ontario address.
Three measures of total activity level (annual number of services provided, annual fee-for-service billings and annual mean number of patients seen per quarter) and one measure of service intensity (annual mean number of services per patient per quarter).
Although several variables (e.g., full-time work status, age, type of practice and recent practice move) influenced the four measures examined, physician's sex contributed significantly to explaining variation in activity in 70% of the regression equations. The women provided 33.0% fewere services per year than the men in family and general practice (p
The objective of this study was to describe individual and practice characteristics of Canadian emergency physicians, and to determine if these characteristics varied with geographic region, type of certification, or method of reimbursement. The study took place in emergency departments across Canada, and all full-time physicians with certification in emergency medicine, and a random sample of Canadian Association of Emergency Physician members without certification were surveyed with a 23-item questionnaire. Descriptive statistics on individual and practice characteristics were outcome measures. Comparative statistics evaluating demographic characteristics by region, type of certification, and method of reimbursement were used. There were significant differences between responders and nonresponders based on certification (P