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What's in the news: Apr. 2 -- Quebec and Ontario sign MD-mobility deal

ON, QC give doctors the freedom to move
A new "reciprocal recognition" agreement signed April 2 by the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario and the Collège des médecins du Québec will allow doctors licensed to practise medicine in one province to practise in the other one as well, beginning August 1. [Full text of the agreement, in English (PDF)]

"The signature of this agreement constitutes a major first step in the
application of the Agreement on Internal Trade, as the Collège des médecins du
Québec and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario encompass close
to 80% of all doctors practicing in Canada," said CMQ president Dr Yves Lamontagne, pictured (on the left) shaking hands with CPSO president Dr Rayudu Koka. [CPSO/CMQ joint news release]

One senior Quebec medical specialist's early reaction, published in the Montreal Gazette, was not positive. "The only way doctors will come to work here will be as a humanitarian gesture, like a third-world country," said Quebec Federation of Medical Specialists president Dr Gaétan Barrette, who called the deal a one-way brain drain. [Montreal Gazette] Higher pay for doctors in Ontario may lure physicians from Quebec, a CMQ spokesperson admitted in December, when the deal was still being negotiated. "What we fear currently is that there will be more physicians from Quebec who will be interested in working in Ontario," said Dr Yves Robert. [CBC News]

Best health-related April Fools' Day prank?
The funniest/scariest healthcare-related April Fools' Day ruse we saw yesterday was from the South African newspaper The Times, which reported that Dr Manto Tshabalala-Msimang -- the former South African health minister who very publicly opposed the use of antiretroviral drugs to treat HIV/AIDS and whose advocacy instead on behalf of using garlic, lemon and beetroot to treat HIV earned her the nickname Dr Garlic -- would be reappointed minister of health. The report, written by the fishy-sounding Oliver Sardine, cited "well-placed sources" and its front page play in the paper's April 1 print edition likely caused more than a few South Africans to gasp in horror.

Putting out mattress fires
Health Canada published the country's first-ever safety regulations on the flammability of mattresses in healthcare facilities. "Mattresses that meet the standard will make only a limited contribution to a fire, especially in the early stages of the fire," the announcement said. "This will allow occupants more time to discover the fire and escape." Until this month, no such regulations existed. [Health Canada]

All her world's a stage now
Ontario GP-cum-playwright Florence Gibson's latest play, Missing, is playing at Toronto's Factory Theatre. [Factory Theatre] The play has received more attention than her previous plays have, including press from the Toronto Star and CBC. [Northumberland Today]

HIV crime lecture coming up
Next Wednesday, University of Toronto bioethicist Thomas Foreman will give a lecture on "The Aziga Case and the Criminalisation of HIV Transmission in Canada" as part of the Joint Centre for Bioethics's lecture series. [Joint Centre for Bioethics] The lecture will be simultaneously broadcast online here.

Technophilia and technophobia
An Atlanta hospital's emergency department has begun using radio-frequency identification software to track the movement of all its doctors and patients in real time. Emory Hospital's goal is to discover how nosocomial infectious diseases are spread, according to hospital VP Dr Douglas Lowery-North. "We use the data in a number of ways, notably to quickly and accurately identify and contain infectious disease." [Radianse news release] This is an undeniably cool and clever use of technology in healthcare, but isn't it just as undeniably creepy? How'd you like your boss tracking exactly where you are at any given moment, or how much time you spend in the john, or which colleague you're surreptitiously sneaking off to the broom closet with during your lunch break? Not that any medical professional would ever...

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  1. Docteur2 April, 2009 7:49 PM

    I blog from a third world country as a humanitarian gesture.

  2. sharon3 April, 2009 11:03 AM


    Has Quebec closed the easy access to Canada's door for migrants?

    Who is "tooling up" for the retraining of migrating physicians from other countries?

    What if the Cascadians are right when they suspect Quebec will be the last standing vestige of the "country formerly known as Canada"?


    I predict easier access through Quebec for physicians from any other country...... to come and "retool" ......earning and learning while serving the remote areas of the province left unattended by physician migration to Ontario.....

    oracle ..... move over :)


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