Issue 3: October 2022
Important Physician Obligations
The College regularly receives calls of concern on two recurring themes.
The first regards responsibilities between physicians, specifically regarding the results of medical investigation. It is the professional responsibility of the physician who orders tests to follow up on those tests. In these times of strain on our system, particularly on those in primary care, physicians are encouraged to review the expectations set out in the College’s Professional Standards Regarding Referral and Consultation for Patients with a Family Physician.
The second theme concerns the myriad of responsibilities that attend to closing your practice. This is a stressful time for physicians and their patients and administrative matters and communication challenges are many.
Physicians are required to ensure patients have continued access to their medical records. The Professional Standards Regarding Temporarily or Permanently Closing a Medical Practice outline the various responsibilities regarding notice, transfer of care, and custodianship of your records. This standard applies to physicians leaving their practice either temporarily or permanently, whether their practice closure is planned, unplanned, or imposed.
The College encourages you to review these standards, as both themes have given rise to multiple (and avoidable) complaints.