A popular theory to explain the crisis in primary care in Canada is that newly graduating physicians simply do not see as many patients as previous generations. But recently published research has thoroughly debunked that myth.
David Rudoler is the lead author of research published in CMAJ entitled Changes over time in patient visits and continuity of care among graduating cohorts of family physicians in 4 Canadian provinces that looked at the number of patient contacts for physicians at all career stages. He and his co-authors found no generational differences in family physician practice.
On this episode, David Rudoler, who is an assistant professor in the faculty of health sciences at Ontario Tech University, tells Drs. Bigham and Omole that, while his research disproves the ‘lazy millennial physician’ trope, it does show that the number of patient contacts has declined for all primary care physicians over the years.
Dr. Tara Kiran, Fidani Chair in Improvement and Innovation at the University of Toronto and a family medicine physician at St. Michael's Hospital Academic Family Health Team, then talks to the hosts about what Canada can do to ensure that everyone in Canada has access to adequate primary care. Dr. Kiran is the author of a commentary in CMAJ entitled Keeping the front door open: ensuring access to primary care for all in Canada.
Dr. Kiran argues that interprofessional team-based care, coupled with payment reform, has the potential to improve primary care capacity, access and outcomes for patients, as well as provider well-being. She advocates for more radical reforms such as regionally organized after-hours care and neighbourhood-based primary care, models that currently exist in several European countries.
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You can find Blair and Mojola on Twitter @BlairBigham and @Drmojolaomole
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The CMAJ Podcast is produced by PodCraft Productions