Aug 15, 2022

[Chair's Message] Looking ahead: Leadership additions at DFCM and autumn events (Summer 2022)

Chair's Message
Purple flowers in front of a U of T building
Photo credit: Daria Perevezentsev

Dear Colleagues,

I hope that the summer months are offering you an opportunity for some much-deserved rest and moments of joy with loved ones. It is a hard time in primary care and in the health system in general. Our patients and communities need us more than ever, as do our learners who want and need to see the importance of family medicine in times of health system crisis. We are all doing our best to respond.

Our department is going from strength to strength in preparing for the work ahead. I am pleased to announce that after an international search, DFCM has appointed Dr. Peter Selby as the Vice-Chair, Research and holder of the Dr. Barnett and Beverley Giblon Professorship in Family Medicine Research. Our Office of Health System Partnership has launched and we have actively been recruiting leaders into key roles that will help us to provide leadership across Toronto Region, bridging between academia and the health system.

With September around the corner, there is much to look forward to in DFCM. We are resuming New Horizons, our speakers series that draws on perspectives from various disciplines to help us consider what a community-responsive department of family medicine should be aiming for. The next session is on Sept. 9 at 8 a.m. and will be conducted virtually on zoom. I am excited to speak with Medhat Mahdy, President and CEO of YMCA of Greater Toronto, about how, through shared values and priorities like relationship-building and health equity, primary care providers and organizations like the Y can build healthier communities.

Register for New Horizons >>

And on Sept. 20 starting at 5:30 p.m., we will recognize the achievements of faculty, learners and staff at our annual DFCM Awards & Celebration Event. Please mark these online events in your calendars.

Register for the 2022 DFCM Awards & Celebration Event >>

This summer has thrown some curveballs. As I write this we are seeing emergency room closures and cries that the system is  under unprecedented strain. Yesterday I saw a patient in my office who moved 500km away from here last year, but who continues to drive all the way to Toronto to see me because she cannot find a family doctor in her new community. You all have many more stories like this.

We need to bring our energy and creativity to these challenges. I hope that we can keep our balance and find ways to renew our energy for the autumn ahead. We are lucky to be part of a community of mutually supportive family physicians, academicians and leaders in DFCM – even in hard times it is good to know that we are not alone. I am grateful for my colleagues.

Wishing you some time in the sunshine,