As we reach the end of the academic year and emerge from the pandemic’s third wave, I would like to thank you all for your efforts, stamina, optimism and adaptability.
DFCM faculty have ensured our learners received the best possible learning experiences in unprecedented circumstances, faculty and learners have kept clinic doors open (physically and virtually) and helped keep our communities safe throughout the pandemic. Our DFCM staff – centrally and at our sites – have worked tirelessly to keep DFCM running smoothly. Thank you to all of you. Your commitment to DFCM and our communities are both essential and much appreciated.
Of course, as summer approaches, the work to manage the pandemic continues. Family doctors continue to lead the extraordinary vaccination effort at mass vaccination clinics and pop ups, and inspire vaccine confidence through community outreach, awareness campaigns and one-on-one conversations with patients. It is thanks to this, that we are leading the pack on vaccination across Canada, and internationally.
Beyond COVID-19, DFCM has had much to celebrate this month. We launched 155 new family doctors into the profession, DFCM’s graduating Class of 2021. As these graduates move into new roles, 167 PGY1s are starting their family medicine residencies.
We also held our first virtual DFCM Conference, with over 220 faculty, alumni, residents, students, staff, and local and international friends tuning in for two live plenary sessions (recordings now available).
June also marks Pride Month, National Indigenous History Month and National Indigenous Peoples Day. These are opportunities to recognize and celebrate the outstanding contributions of diverse individuals and cultures, but are also stark reminders of the marginalization and oppression of equity-deserving communities, and the need to dismantle systemic barriers.
This is particularly pertinent as we learn of more than 750 unmarked graves found on the grounds of Regina’s former Marieval Indian Residential School. This tragedy is compounded by the knowledge that still more graves will likely be discovered as investigations continue across Canada and beyond. For those deeply affected by this horrifying news, the University has outlined several resources and supports.
The past academic year has been a very challenging one for our faculty, staff and learners. I hope you can all find some time to disconnect and recharge over the summer months. Let’s look forward with optimism and renewed energy to the 2021/2022 academic year.
Department of Family and Community Medicine
June 29, 2021