Dialogue Volume 13 Issue 3 2017 - Page 5

MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT Dear Colleagues: I David Rouselle, College President Physicians who use an electronic medical record must have a level of comfort and fluency with their system recently attended the an- nual meeting of the Canadian Medical Association and the issue of physician burnout was a topic of discussion among the doc- tors in attendance. Physician stress and burnout are matters that the College recognizes as serious issues. We cannot care for our patients unless we pay atten- tion to our own mental and physi- cal health. The College has a long history of working with the OMA’s Physician Health Program to ensure that physicians get the care they need when they feel overwhelmed by the challenges presented to them. I was not surprised to hear that the necessity of having to deal with stricter regulatory requirements was often raised as a cause of burnout. The regulatory environment that I began working in several decades ago is much different than the one that we are in today. There is an increased requirement for trans- parency – much of what used to happen behind the College’s closed doors is now posted on the register, for example. The world has changed and the College has had to reflect society’s evolving expectations. The article on page 21 about the College of Nurses of Ontario’s new model of governance makes the point that greater government scrutiny means that regulators must continue to enhance transparency, address both real and perceived conflicts of interest and achieve outcomes that are defensible in the public interest. And if colleges are not seen to be proactive, they run the very real risk that government will step in and impose solutions. The College cannot and will not abrogate its regulatory duty but I do think we can enhance our sensitivity to the issue of physician burnout. Certainly, it is in the best interests of patients that this problem is ad- dressed. Please stay tuned for more on this important issue. ****** I like gadgets and technology but I will come clean and admit at the outset that I am no Mark Zucker- berg. So when I did decide to go to an electronic medical record, I knew I was in for a steep learning curve. And that, my friends, would be the very polite way to describe the next year as I struggled to make my new EMR do what I wanted it to do. Three years later, and I am pleased to have made the decision to leave paper records behind me. But I know that, even now, there are fea- ISSUE 3, 2017 DIALOGUE 5