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A partnership of Doctors of BC
and Ministry of Health
December 2016

Prevention Innovation Labs
From January to August 2014, the SSC held a series of Prevention Innovation Labs to evaluate the integration of prevention strategies in specialty practice. The Innovation Labs brought together specialist physicians and experts in prevention, health promotion, and behavioural counselling to equip a small, but diverse group of clinicians with evidence-based tools to encourage healthy behaviour with their patients. For more information about future Labs, please contact Karyn Fritz at

SSC EOI Update
The SSC continues to review all of the Expression of Interest (EOI) submissions. A considerable amount of time has been spent assessing each of the 300+ ideas submitted. In addition, health authorities and specialist section leads have provided their input. We are determining ways to capture and support as many ideas as possible. One way is to find alignment with other projects or initiatives where there are synergies and where there is appropriate health authority endorsement. This may open up applications to other potential funding sources. Results of the EOI assessments are expected to be announced in the Fall. Please stay tuned.

Fishing for Pearls
A recent "Fishing for Pearls and Digging for Nuggets" event held in Victoria proved to be fun, collegial, and professionally rewarding for the both participating specialists and family physicians. In a speed-dating format, a dozen specialists--from cardiology to psychiatry to imaging--each spent 20 minutes at six tables of family physicians, sharing pearls of knowledge about best practices in their area of expertise and answering questions. Learn more

Tele-Mental Health: providing timely access

In Port Hardy a patient sits in a comfortable chair in a sound-proof room with a psychiatric nurse or mental health worker; both are staring at a small screen. Soon the screen lights up and a psychiatrist in Victoria appears on the screen ready to engage.

Welcome to the Vancouver Island Integrated TeleMental Health Collaborative Care Program. Thanks to this program waitlists for psychiatric assessments in Port Hardy have decreased from nine months to approximately five weeks.

Hip fracture redesign – reducing trauma

Every year almost 4000 older adults find themselves in emergency rooms with a fractured hip. These hip fractures are increasing by about 2% every year because of a large cohort of aging baby boomers. The Hip Fracture Redesign Project, one of the Quality and Innovation Initiatives sponsored by SSC, is implementing processes to provide optimal hip fracture care.

Currently, about 50% of hip fracture patients lose at least one level of mobility or independence. In hospital mortality rates have been as high as 30%, and the average length of stay is more than 17 days.

General Surgeons

General surgery is like an umbrella – it covers surgeons with the skills, knowledge and familiarity to treat a broad spectrum of conditions. On any given day, a general surgeon could save the life of a car accident victim, repair a ruptured appendix or operate on someone with cancer. 

This is why Dr. Mark Dickeson, President, Section of General Surgery was drawn to the specialty. “I liked the thought of doing something different every day of the week – the diversity of practice was a huge factor in why I chose General Surgery.”

About Us

SSC supports specialists’ work and professional growth. Formed in 2006 under the Physician Master Agreement to help the Doctors of BC, BC government and health authorities collaborate on the delivery of specialist services and support improvement of the specialist care system in BC.

Sharing your knowledge is important - if you have stories to tell, information to share or feedback to give, please send us an email:

Specialist Services Committee
115-1665 West Broadway Vancouver, BC V6J 5A4

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