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Resident Submissions

THE COVID 2020 ISSUE november 2020 | issue 43 15-16

An Interview with RDBC Staff Member Brandi MacLean


Pandemic Money Lessons for Doctors

The purpose of Resident Doctors of BC is to support residents in fulfilling their education to become well-informed, prepared and professional physicians to enhance patient care. MISSION STATEMENT • • • • •

To To To To To

advocate for contractual matters support members’ education and encourage excellence in the teaching environment promote its members’ professional, personal and financial well-being foster collegiality among its members throughout British Columbia facilitate collaboration with the community and other professional groups

CONTACT US Phone 604-876-7636 | 1-888-877-2722 Email info@residentdoctorsbc.ca Facebook Resident Doctors of BC Twitter @ResidentDocsBC Instagram @ResidentDocsBC 350 - 1665 West Broadway Vancouver, BC V6J 1X1 CONTENTS 2 A Word From Our President 5 Board of Directors 2020/2021 9 COVID-19 Residency FAQ 10 COVID-19 Wellness Resources 11 Resident Spotlight: Annie Lalande 13 Resident Submissions 15 An Interview with RDBC staff, Brandi MacLean 17 Insurance Matters: Protecting Your Financial Wellbeing During COVID-19 19 Your Resident Specialist Insurance Advisor (Doctor of BC)

21 Pandemic Money Lessons for Doctors 23 New Virtual Supports Available for Healthcare Providers in Rural, Remote and First Nations Communities 25 Distributed Site: Williams Lake


Dear colleagues, It’s hard to believe that we have already made it halfway through another year of residency. I would like to start off by welcoming our incoming residents who I hope are now settling into residency. The transition certainly isn’t easy but soon it will all be over and we will wish we were back in the trenches...or so I am told. After all, we are here to help each other learn and grow in our pursuit to become excellent physicians. Here at RDBC, the Board of Directors and our staff have been hard at work and many committees have already convened to discuss this year’s initiatives. Spearheaded by our Director of Internal Affairs, Maya Rosenkrantz (R1 Pediatrics, Victoria), the Council of Program Representatives (COPR) composed of residents from each of the 72 residency programs were brought together to discuss residency concerns. These meetings are an important way for us to stay informed of issues that are at the top of mind for residents, so I encourage you to continue sharing your residency experiences with your COPR representative. We work to help resolve these issues and create awareness to mitigate these challenges. Externally, we continue to strengthen our relationships with key stakeholders. Led by our Director of External and Labour Relations, Evan Mah (R1 Family, Campbell River), we have held quarterly resident engagement events with the Ministry of Health that cover topics from Virtual Health to COVID-19. This spring, we were excited to announce that residents were included by the Ministry of Health as health care workers eligible for the pandemic pay. This serves as a reminder that the care that we as residents provide to our patients on a daily basis do not go unrecognized. It reaffirms that we are in fact important frontline health care workers. One of our priorities this year is to improve and streamline our internal processes. With Casey Chan as our Director of Finance and Operations (R5 Internal Medicine, Vancouver), I am confident that we will identify new strategies to support each and every one of you. One such example is the way we restructured the distribution of the call stipend surplus to more accurately reflect the hours of call worked. We hope that this helped to improve transparency for a more equitable distribution to all residents. We do continue to work on the new call stipend system and appreciate your patience while working on its optimization. It goes without saying that the pandemic has impacted not only our personal lives, but also our training. My heart goes out to all those residents who have been impacted by the licensing examinations this year. It has certainly been a frustrating and at times unjust process. Our Executive Director, Harry Gray, has been working tirelessly with Resident Doctors of Canada and provisional licensing bodies to advocate for you and to support you. We are committed


to your safety and to minimizing the disruption that this pandemic has on our training. Your wellness is at the top of mind. As we head into the gloomy days of Winter, I encourage you and your programs to take advantage of our Plan Your Own Social. Led by our very own Naima Kotadia (R3 Anesthesia, Vancouver), we hope to have a surprise coming soon. Stay tuned! Lastly, I am delighted to continue to work on such a diverse and well-rounded board with individuals of all backgrounds and specialities, spread out across the province. I am confident that through our representation and work with UBC PGME we can continue to incorporate equity, diversity, and inclusion in our decisions and policies and its direct impact on residents. As always, I am committed to advocating for a safe working and learning environment, where we are treated with respect from our staff and allied health. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me at president@residentdoctorsbc.ca. I wish all of you and your families a warm and holiday season. Warm regards, Dr. Daphne Lu President of Resident Doctors of BC




Dr. Daphne Lu, President | R3, General Surgery Last year, Daphne served as the RDBC Director of External and Labour Relations and in this capacity forged new collaborations with the Ministry of Health. This year, she is looking forward to working with a talented team of new board members to continue to grow the organization. Dr. Alana Fleet, Immediate Past President | R4, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation This is Alana’s third year as a RDBC Board Director, previously serving as President, and the Board Chair of Resident Doctors of Canada. Prior to her move to Vancouver, she split her time between Kingston and Halifax.

Dr. Heather Cadenhead, Director | R3, Anesthesiology Heather’s program has the unique perspective of being one of the first CBD curriculum adopters, and she hopes that her presence on the Board will help for a smooth transition for other specialties. This will be Heather’s second term on the RDBC Board of Directors. Dr. Casey Chan, Director of Operations & Finance | R5, General Internal Medicine Casey is based in Vancouver but will be rotating across the province in the year. He is looking forward to work on bettering calls, leaves, and increasing member engagement. Dr. Prabhjas Hans, Director | R1, Family Medicine Jas previously served on the Resident Doctors of BC Board as the UBC Medical Undergraduate Society Representative. This will be Jas’ first term on the RDBC Board of Directors. His interests are in Resident health and wellness, advocacy, and health policy. He enjoys drinking craft beer, eating good food, and staying active. Dr. Naima Kotadia, Director | R3, Anesthesiology Naima is a third year Anesthesiology resident and was previously an Official Observer on the Board as well as Director of Resident Affairs & Wellness. She will be serving her second term on the RDBC Board of Directors this year. She hopes to continue bringing fresh ideas, creativity and enthusiasm to the leadership this year.


Dr. Laura Labonté, Director | R2, Psychiatry Laura is a second year Psychiatry resident who is passionate about advocacy, leadership and research. Originally from Kingston Ontario, she completed her PhD and MDCM studies at McGill University, where she served on various university committees. This will be her first term on the RDBC Board of Directors.

Dr. Kevin Liang, Director | R2, Family Medicine Kevin is a first year Family Medicine resident from the Vancouver-Fraser site. Born in Taiwan, he completed his undergraduate training at McGill University, and medical school at UBC. This will be his first term on the RDBC Board of Directors. Dr. Evan Mah, Director of External & Labour Relations | R1, Family Medicine Evan is a first year resident in Family Medicine, based out of Campbell River in the Vancouver Island – Strathcona Program. This is his first year as a RDBC Board Director. Prior to Residency, he completed both his Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and Medical Degree at the University of Saskatchewan, completing a Longitudinal Integrated Clerkship based out of Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan. Dr. Pavandeep Mehat, Director | R1, Family Medicine This will be Pav’s first term on the RDBC Board of Directors. Before attending medical school at UBC, he completed a bachelors in biomedical engineering at Boston University and a master’s of pharmaceutical sciences at UBC. Dr. Devon Mitchell, Director | R1, Emergency Medicine Devon is passionate about public policy and working with policymakers to advocate for patients and residents alike. This will be his first term on the RDBC Board of Directors. He has worked previously on the executives of the UBC Medical Undergraduate Society and the Canadian Federation of Medical Students. Dr. Maya Rosenkrantz, Director of Resident Affairs & Wellness | R1, Pediatrics Maya completed medical school at UBC Vancouver campus. Maya enjoyed the distributed nature and BC-wide collaboration at UBC and looks forward to continuing to engage with her resident colleagues across the province. She is excited to represent BC residents this year as Director of Resident Affairs and Wellness.


EX-OFFICIO Dr. Sarah Silverberg, Director | R2, Pediatrics Sarah is serving her second term on the RDBC Board of Directors. She currently sits as the Vice President of Resident Doctors of Canada. She has previously served on the Finance Committee, the Joint Task Force and the Strategic Planing team. Dr. Brandon Tang, Director | R3, Internal Medicine Brandon is passionate about medical education and quality improvement in healthcare. In addition to serving on the RDBC Board of Directors, he has been engaged at the national level as former Co-Chair of the Resident Doctors of Canada (RDoC) Practice Committee and current Chief Resident of the International Conference on Residency Education (ICRE).


Mr. Harry Gray

Ms. Monica Hsieh

Executive Director

Medical Undergraduate Society Representative

VOLUNTEER WITH RDBC Resident Doctors of BC has a variety of committees residents are welcome to join, as well as project teams available throughout the year. We are looking to recruit members who are eager to leave their mark on the residency experience in BC. If there is a topic you are passionate about, let us know and we’ll be happy to accept your volunteer application. Visit our Volunteer page to sign up.



COVID-19 AND RESIDENCY: AN FAQ As the situation surrounding COVID-19 progresses in British Columbia, questions and concerns have risen regarding what happens when residents and healthcare workers are asked to self-quarantine, contract the virus, and general concerns. We have been working since the spring to develop and update a running FAQ section on our website to help answer any questions residents may have regarding working during COVID-19. Questions include, but are not limited to: • • • • • •

What happens if I am working with a confirmed case of COVID-19? What do I do if I came in contact with a presumed or confirmed case? What do I do if I test positive for COVID-19? What if I am concerned about working during this outbreak? Do I have the right to refuse unsafe work? What options are available in regards to childcare or caring for sick family members?

We encourage all residents to familiarize themselves with this page, and to reach out to us directly if there are any further, or unanswered, questions. You can find the COVID-19 and Residency FAQ on our website.


COVID-19 WELLNESS RESOURCES It is a difficult time for the world, and especially so for our frontline healthcare workers. In the midst of everything, it is important to continue caring for yourself. Since the spring, we have been working on a list of wellness resources. These resources have been compiled by members of our Health & Wellness Committee, fellow residents, and staff to help you through this period. We invite you to send us any resources you may be personally using and would like to share with your fellow residents. We regularly update our resources page with resources you can make use of during this time. Some examples of resources available are: • • • • • •

Animal watching Art & Music Cooking Infant, Kid and Youth Activities Support Virtiual Games and Hangouts

Thank you, residents, for all that you are doing for the healthcare of BC, and we hope you all remain safe and healthy. You can find our COVID-19 Wellness Resources on our website.



AUGUST, 2020 Dr. Annie Lalande, PGY-4, General Surgery You are a General Surgery resident, interested in sustainability and food systems. What drew you to these topics specifically? It’s not a typical path, I know! Growing up practicing a lot of outdoor sports, I think I gained an early appreciation for nature and rapidly started feeling concerned about waste, pollution and climate change. Until recently, my involvement was more at an individual level; initially forcing my family into composting (don’t worry they enjoy it now!) and more recently working towards a less wasteful lifestyle. However, at the hospital, I have found myself conflicted and often at odds with my personal beliefs about environmental sustainability, witnessing a discrepancy between liberally using limited and finite resources, while working in an institution that exists to treat many diseases that result from or are worsened by climate change. Thankfully, there was someone here I could turn to, who like me was very concerned with these topics: Dr. Andrea MacNeill. She is a surgical oncologist at Vancouver General Hospital spearheading the movement to make our surgical department, our hospital and our health authority more sustainable, paving the way for healthcare across Canada. Ever since we started working together, she has been a mentor and neverending source of inspiration. The specific topic of food came to me after a particularly frustrating week of rounding, where I realized that none of my patients were eating after their operations because they all disliked the food they were being


served. I couldn’t bring myself to understand how this had become an acceptable standard in our hospitals, resulting in malnutrition for our patients and damage to our planet, and decided we should really work on fixing this. DR. MEAGAN MCKEEN Can you tell us a bit more about how these topics come into play in healthcare? They are inextricably related! The recently published EAT-Lancet commission has brought forth food as a major contributor to climate change and environmental degradation, through unsustainable global dietary habits and agricultural practices, as well as food waste. Food is an aspect that we can all relate to, for the simple reason that everyone must eat. Yet, as we know, in hospitals, food is often unpalatable, and seen as an area for cost-containment. This results in malnutrition for our inpatients, and large amounts of wasted resources; on average in Canada, approximately 50% of the food served to patients is thrown away. More studies are emerging within our literature linking poor in-hospital nutrition to increased length of stay and complications, incurring larger costs to our hospitals. Still, this remains an under-appreciated issue within the medical community, and the striking paucity of physician leadership in food improvement programs leads to perpetuation of the status quo. Healthcare has recently been highlighted as a significant contributor to greenhouse gas emissions (4% of Canadian greenhouse gas emissions!). We believe that improving food systems within our hospitals will be an important step towards mitigating our environmental impact and promoting healthy

habits in our patient population. In September, you will be starting a Masters in Resources, Environment and Sustainability at UBC, focusing on food systems in healthcare to decrease the environmental impact of inpatient nutrition. What does an undertaking like that entail? We first want to assess the current situation at Vancouver General Hospital, focusing on surgical inpatients and evaluating how much and why food is thrown out. We will then create a trial menu, in line with current planetary health guidelines, and compare its impact on patient satisfaction, nutrition, perioperative outcomes, length of stay and environmental impact. We have a dynamic team involved, which includes Chef Ned Bell (prior executive chef for Ocean Wise and founder of Chefs for Oceans), a registered dietician and current medical student and experts from UBC in environmental behavioral psychology, large-scale food systems and environmental law. It will be quite an undertaking, but the time is ripe for a change (… sorry for the pun!). COVID-19 has exposed a lot of critical flaws in our current food systems across the world, and is expected to cause twice as many people (260 million) to suffer from hunger this year. It is however giving us an opportunity to rebuild our food systems to become nourishing, healthy, accessible and environmentally respectful. We are excited to take part in this transformation in the healthcare system!

moment, I hope I will stay in BC for at least a while longer – after all, it is a wonderful area both for sustainability and outdoor activities! Changing habits is not an easy feat. What would you suggest as first steps to start addressing your personal environmental impact? I think the first step is awareness. We must accept that we are facing a terrifying crisis, but that we can all have a positive impact through the choices we make every day; that realization is incredibly empowering! Start small, be kind to yourself and recognize that no one is perfect. Begin by picking something that seems achievable: whether it be bringing your reusable shopping bags to the grocery store, preferentially choosing produce that are package-free, bring your own utensils or coffee cup at work (people who know me know I usually keep a Spork in my pocket…), or choosing to use your bike instead of your car to travel short distances once in a while. It’s also something we can be aware of in the hospital: avoid ordering unnecessary tests and be mindful of using only what you need during procedures. It’s also important to realize that we all have our environmental “flaws” and that we don’t get it right all the time; it is not a crime and does not take away from all the efforts you are making in the right direction. Ask questions, start a dialogue with your friends and don’t forget that small gradual changes go a long way!

What are your future plans, once you have obtained your Masters? I will still have two years of residency left to complete after this, which will be fun to return to. I’ve been passionate about trauma surgery for a long time and I am currently planning to pursue a fellowship in that field. I am still not sure where exactly I will want to work, but I know I will want the pursuit of sustainability in healthcare to become a significant part of my practice. At the

For more Resident Spotlight features, visit our website.



DR. FARAH JOSEPH I’m a PGY1 in St. Paul’s Family Medicine program. I have been drawing ever since I learned to hold a pencil, and received formal training in Visual Arts at Western University before medical school. My go-to mediums include watercolor, acrylic, and charcoal. Aside from painting, I also really enjoy various types of printmaking - linocut, copper etching, silk screen, and lithography. As you can see from my work, I love to have fun with colour! Creating art brings me a sense of peace, ability to express my emotions and blend reality with perception. My artwork is inspired by my interests in medicine, the human experience, and aesthetics. If you want to check out more of my work, my Instagram handle is @the. doctor.artist.

“Peacock” Medium: Linocut on paper Size: 8”x10” “Zephyr” Medium: Linocut and silk screen on paper Size: 8”x10”

“Elephants In The Room” Medium: Ink and watercolor on paper Size: 22”x30”



Prasenjit Das is a Family Medicine graduate based out of Vancouver. In addition to being a physician, he is a musician, coder, and process automation engineer for music festivals and entrepreneurs. Dr. Das is an experienced composer who has written songs and melodies for some of the biggest electronic dance labels in the world including FSOE and Enhanced. This track, entitled “Eagle”, is an ambient piano piece originally produced alongside acclaimed producer Mike SaintJules of NYC. Upon first review by Ferry Corsten (one of DJ Mag’s Top 100), the track was signed to his label Flashover and was featured on their Stillpoint collection. We hope you enjoy it.

“Venus” Medium: Linocut and silk screen on paper Size: 8”x10”

“Liberty Bloom” Medium: Ink and Crayola markers on paper Size: 18”x24”

“Renal Calculus” Medium: Acrylic on canvas Size: 24”x30”



AN INTERVIEW WITH RDBC STAFF, BRANDI MACLEAN For those readers unfamiliar with you, would you mind introducing yourself to them? What exactly is your role at RDBC? How long have you been with the organization? I’ve been with RDBC for 4 years now. My role has evolved over the years, and I am now the Member and Stakeholder Engagement Advisor. The Advisor role is advising Residents when they have problems or concerns relating to their employment, call stipends, or their careers. The Engagement role involves bringing groups together to advance the interests of Residents. I plan events that are just to engage Residents with each other, events that bring Residents together with our stakeholders such as Orientation and the Tax Clinics or the Ministry of Health dinners. I also meet with our Stakeholders individually to promote Residents and their importance to healthcare delivery. Up until this year, your primary focus at the office has been on events: Orientations, Fright Nights, Christmas Markets, and even program-specific Lunch & Learns. These fun events were unfortunately put on pause due to COVID. In the summer, we held our first ever virtual Orientation, which went off extremely well thanks to you and your hard work. How has it been having to pivot from the traditional events format to a brand new, virtual one? What have been some of the challenges you’ve come across? I really love the in-person Orientation event. It’s such an amazing time to get to know our new Residents. They’ve graduated Med School and haven’t started Residency yet, so we are meeting them at possibly the least


stressful time of their lives. This group of amazingly smart, accomplished individuals comes together, they’re excited for the next step in their careers, excited to be meeting new people, happy to be running into friends from school. The Stakeholders are there to welcome Residents and let them know they will be supported and cared for throughout their residencies. It’s such a positive event and the energy in the venue is incredible – even the venue staff have commented on what a great event it is. Having Dr. Henry and Minister Dix welcome them was a real highlight for us, as it shows how valued Residents are. They got all the information about surviving Residency they would usually get, and that’s very important, but I feel in my heart that this year’s R1 Residents missed out on the great energy and welcoming spirit of the event, and I really wish I could have recreated that online. That said, we had 406 attendees at one point, which is a pretty great turnout considering we had 409 new Residents starting this year. That trend has been repeated in other online events we’ve had – being able to attend from home has removed one of the barriers to participation that our members may have faced in the past. It’s also opened up all of our events to Residents in distributed locations. Because 75% of our membership is based in the lower mainland, most of our events are held here, which leaves 25% of our membership unable to attend. While we do our best to visit each distributed location at least once per year and host a social event while we’re there, it has been nice to host events that every

single resident can attend. The challenge moving forward will be to find a balance. I would like to do a combination of online and in-person events in the future, when we’re allowed to get together in groups again. I think it’s important that everyone get outside and play and to interact with their colleagues outside of a clinical setting, but I appreciate the convenience for Residents to be able to go home at the end of a long day and not to have to choose between the comfort of home and going out again. You also provide staff support for the Health & Wellness Committee, which has been in high gear since spring with initiatives to support residents during this unprecedented year. How has the Committee been adapting? Can you share with us any plans the Committee is working on that residents can look forward to? We have a few new, and a few ongoing initiatives coming from Health & Wellness this year. When the shut down first happened, the Health & Wellness Committee got behind the COVID Resources page on our website and our membership found that extremely helpful as we were all trying to figure out how to navigate these unprecedented changes to our lives. Plan Your Own Social and Plan Your Own Sports have had to change due to the Pandemic restrictions, and the Committee is brainstorming online events that our members can do with their colleagues that RDBC can sponsor. Soon the membership will be receiving a short survey asking what kind of sports/wellness/social activities they want to do so the Health & Wellness Committee can provide financial support to those initiatives. It’s not just physical wellness we’re concerned with, and the Health & Wellness Committee has started a project to provide Residents with all the possible resources at our disposal for Mental Health and emotional wellness. We are starting on a series of

events designed to provide Residents with the tools to find their own inner strength and resilience. Watch your emails for invitations in the new year… Most recently, the Committee has ordered RDBC-branded non-medical face masks to keep our members safe when out in public. Look for those in the hospitals and resident lounges, or ask your CoPR rep about them! Lastly, where do you see events in a postCOVID world? The virtual format has brought with it both cons and pros to events. Do you see RDBC incorporating virtual elements, or lessons learned from it, into traditional events in a COVID-free future? I always think about those Residents who have come here from another province or country, who may not have family or friends or a support system in place when they arrive in BC. Residents are such a hardworking group, focused so strongly on their careers, that it would be easy for some of them to never see anything outside their apartment or their hospitals. If for no other reason, I would like to see a return to inperson events. Plus, they’re fun! But the lessons we’ve learned about being able to include the entire membership and the convenience for our Residents have been important, so I think the future will include online engagement in addition to the in-person events. So many barriers are removed when an event is held online, and it’s in everyone’s best interest to have healthy participation. From the RDBC side, the more we get to know our Residents the more we can advocate for their best interests.

To get to know the rest of the RDBC staff and their roles, visit our website.



INSURANCE MATTERS: PROTECTING YOUR FINANCIAL WELLBEING DURING COVID-19 You’re doing everything possible to protect your health while managing the front lines of a global pandemic. Make sure you’re maximizing your financial protection as well during this time. Here are 5 tips to maximize your financial safety during unpredictable times: 1. Ensure you have personally-paid disability in addition to your employer-paid Resident Doctors of BC long-term disability benefit. If your health changes negatively during residency, it may be challenging to apply for personal disability coverage later. Ensure you have the right plans now that will continue into practice without additional medical questions. Over 90% of practicing physicians don’t receive employer-paid disability coverage and must seek out coverage on their own.

Disability Insurance (PDI). This is the only plan in BC that pays benefits for mandatory work-related quarantine for practicing physicians. You can enroll in PDI without medical questions if you have Doctors of BC IncomeProtect™ for Residents prior to practice**. Otherwise, you can enroll in PDI by passing a medical health check. Speak to a Doctors of BC Insurance Advisor about PDI if you’re unsure of your no-medical eligibility. 4. Review your situation with an insurance expert It takes 30-60 minutes of your time to ensure you’re properly insured today and for the future. Speak with a knowledgeable insurance advisor about your particular needs during a pandemic. It’s your right to ask an advisor about his compensation and ties to other financial entities.

2. Maximize your disability coverage

5. Utilize your mental wellness resources

Your chances of becoming ill increases during a global pandemic. Your personallypaid disability policy can increase* your total income stream if you’re off work due to an illness (including COVID-19 related illnesses) or accident. At Doctors of BC, the maximum disability coverage is R1-R5 $3,000; R6+ $6,000; and Fellowship $7,500.

COVID-19 creates extra stress during residency. Protect your mental wellbeing so you can continue to earn income and complete your residency as planned. Your employer-paid benefits plan offers reimbursement for psychologist visits. You can also access free mental health resources through Physician Health Program, UBC Resident Wellness Office, and EFAP Employee Wellness through VCH.

3. Prepare yourself for practice today When you enter practice in BC, you may enroll in the BC government-paid Physicians’


* Speak to an Insurance Advisor about whether your personally-paid plan will pay in addition to your employer-paid plan. . **Must have at least $2,000 coverage for 12 months or longer prior to practicing.

Contact Doctors of BC for a complimentary educational discussion on your insurance needs: Doctors of BC Insurance Advisors offer virtual appointments from 7am – 7pm Lisa Fincaryk Insurance Advisor, Early Career Specialist, Doctors of BC lfincaryk@doctorsofbc.ca 778-980-2387

Doctors are at the centre of everything we do. We understand the challenges unique to your profession. Let us simplify insurance and give you financial peace of mind. Our non-commissioned advisors put doctors first through personalized insurance solutions. And when you need us most, at time of claim, we’ll be right by your side. If it’s important to your practice, your family and your life, it’s important to us.


Erin Connors

Hali Stus


Renee Brickner

Paula Rooney



Jeff Gopal


Channelle Sawyer


Tu-Anh Lemckert


Lisa Fincaryk



insurance@doctorsofbc.ca TF 1 800 665 2262 ext. 7914



YOUR RESIDENT SPECIALIST INSURANCE ADVISOR Lisa Fincaryk is a non-commissioned, licensed Insurance Advisor at Doctors of BC who specializes in supporting the unique needs of early career physicians. All Doctors of BC Insurance Advisors are salaried - not commissioned - to provide objective service that’s in the best interest of members. Prior to joining Doctors of BC, Lisa worked as an insurance broker for one of Western Canada’s largest independently owned firms. Lisa focused on insurance education for young families. With over 15 years of business and financial experience, she is passionate about helping early career professionals and families understand the importance of insurance and navigating their options. Lisa is currently working toward her Certified Financial Planner designation. Did You Know? Doctors of BC is a full-service insurance agency. As your “one-stop shop” for all your insurance requirements, Doctors of BC offers exclusively discounted member-only physician plans and private individual plans from Canada’s leading insurers. Contact Lisa for a complimentary educational discussion on your insurance needs: Lisa Fincaryk Insurance Advisor, Early Career Specialist, Doctors of BC lfincaryk@doctorsofbc.ca 778-980-2387



Financial basics for residents, by residents. Bridge the gap between being a student and an employee.




Alphil Guilaran, Financial Literacy Counsel

Over this past year, COVID-19 has changed the way doctors think about money and their own financial security. Speaking to doctors, whose incomes have dropped during the pandemic, I often hear, “this was unexpected and even as a doctor there are no guarantees”.

clients during COVID-19. Lesson #2: Build passive income streams

Doctors who experienced a decrease in income between March and September 2020, realized the importance of having passive The pandemic continues to teach doctors income. The pandemic has taught them that three important money lessons when it comes they need to have a plan for how to make to financial planning. By learning and applying money when they suddenly cannot see as these lessons early, residents can build towards many patients or do elective surgeries. a strong financial foundation as they complete As a resident doctor, explore different ways their training and transition into practice. of building passive income streams. Talk to your financial advisor about the various ways Let’s explore these 3 key money lessons: you can start building passive income through investing. If you are entrepreneurial, you can Lesson #1: Prepare for the unexpected also consider ways to monetize your business ideas. When it comes to finances, an emergency fund and adequate insurance coverage are mustLesson #3: Prioritize estate and incapacity haves when preparing for the unexpected. planning For emergency funds, the best course of action is to start saving 10% of your income, Doctors who are serving on the frontlines until you have set aside 3-6 months of living during the pandemic are prioritizing, updating expenses. During a pandemic, you can start or or creating their wills, powers of attorney and add to your emergency fund by reviewing your advance care plans. They want to make sure spending plan and trimming non-essential that their wishes and intentions are clear, in the spending. event that they become quarantined from their families. For insurance, review what you expect from both your employer and any private disability It is important for young doctors to pause and and life insurance plans you may have. Make plan ahead about who will make financial and sure that coverages are aligned with your healthcare decisions, in case they are unable needs and priorities so that you are prepared, to. should you or your family need to make a claim during a pandemic. It is also a good These are unprecedented times and by idea to reach out to your insurance advisor applying the three money lessons in this to determine how they are supporting their article, resident doctors can feel confident in


building a stronger financial foundation and become better prepared for the road ahead. Resident doctors who have questions about financial planning or about drafting a will, a power of attorney and/or an advance care plan, can access financial coaching and legal consultation as part of their VCH Employee Wellness Benefits. For more information, contact 604.872.4929 or 1.800.505.4929 outside the Lower Mainland. You can also use the QR code below to book a financial coaching session.



NEW VIRTUAL SUPPORTS AVAILABLE FOR HEALTHCARE PROVIDERS IN RURAL, REMOTE AND FIRST NATIONS COMMUNITIES RCCBC A new virtual support initiative is enabling rural healthcare providers to deliver timely patient-centred care closer to home. Real-Time Virtual Support (RTVS) pathways provide physicians, nurse practitioners, and nurses in rural, remote, and First Nations communities with access to 24-hour, just-intime advice to support patient care. Through Zoom, they can be connected to one of five teams providing culturally safe and compassionate support: 1. RUDi – Emergency 2. ROSe – Critical Care 3. CHARLiE – Pediatrics 4. MaBAL – Maternity and Newborn 5. UBC Dermatology Rural and Remote Service These teams have an understanding of the rural and cultural contexts and are available to support rural healthcare providers for any issue, including: • providing a patient consult, second opinion, or ongoing patient support; • reviewing a patient case; • running through patient simulation scenarios; • navigating the healthcare system; and • providing collaborative support in critical times. “The pathways were developed not only to improve access to care but also to help rural healthcare providers seek support about their patients or situations in a safe, nonjudgemental way,” says Dr. John Pawlovich,


RTVS lead for the Rural Coordination Centre of BC, one of the organizations involved in the initiative. “Real-Time Virtual Support is a change in culture for accessing assistance and support, and we hope to see more rural healthcare providers reaching out to us.” To learn more about the pathways and how to access them, download the RTVS Toolkit for Healthcare Providers at http://bit.ly/ RTVSToolkit. The toolkit is aimed at helping healthcare providers in rural, remote, and First Nations communities navigate the pathways and includes access information, Zoom instructions, FAQs, bios and photos of RTVS teams, and posters. Real-Time Virtual Support is an initiative of the Virtual Health and Wellness Collaborative for Rural and First Nations BC and is made possible through the incredible work and collaboration of the Rural Coordination Centre of BC (supported by the Joint Standing Committee on Rural Issues), First Nations Health Authority, Provincial Health Services Authority, Providence Health Care, BC Emergency Medicine Network, and UBC Department of Emergency Medicine. For more information about Real-Time Virtual Support, visit rccbc.ca/rtvs.

MOVEMBER 2020 CONTEST FUNDRAISER Grow a ‘mo, save a bro! Our Movember contest is back for yet another year. We will be donating $5.00 to the Movember Foundation for every participant in this year’s Movember campaign. Submit a photo of your ‘stache (real or fake) to info@residentdoctorsbc.ca and you will be entered to win a $100 gift card to Amazon (unfortunately, no spa or hot shave gift cards this year—we’re excited for when we can bring them back!). All participants will receive a $5 Starbucks gift card. All Mos and MoSistas are encouraged to participate. Visit mosista.co/rdbc to join the RDBC Team or donate to the cause. Contest ends Nov. 30, 2020. Resident voting for best ‘stache to win the grand prize opens Dec. 1, 2020. To view the previous year’s entries, click here.



Williams Lake williamslake.ca

Williams Lake is a beautiful city and the second largest in the Cariboo area. With a population of over 10,000 people, this city is the perfect location for nature lovers and city enthusiasts both. THINGS TO DO Fun Escapes Williams Lake is ready to deliver. From nature activities sure to satisfy the biggest outdoor enthusiasts, to the largest recreational mall in the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast, this small yet bustling city is sure to take your breath away. • Fishing! With a name like Williams Lake, you can expect bountiful catches, with 4500 lakes to choose from in the surrounding area.

Events • Williams Lake Stampede - this annual event in July is the second largest stampede in all of Canada, second only to Calgary. Grab your cowboy boots and enjoy the weekend activities! • Can’t wait until summer? The spring season brings its own indoor stampede, as well as a Rotary Club Home & Trade show! • In the fall, enjoy the Williams Lake Harvest Fair and a beautiful fireworks display on the rodeo grounds for Halloween. • Wishing you were out skiing? Williams Lake has its own ski hill and Cross Country Ski Trials! And while you’re at it... why not try some ice fishing?

• Williams Lake and the surrounding areas are rife with beautiful trails, for walking and biking both. Enjoy the classic, beautiful British Columbia.

Food and Drink

• Williams Lake has heritage sites in all cardinal directions. From mining relics, to the deepest fjord lake in the world, you can close your eyes and pick a direction and find yourself somewhere new and sure to grab your attention.

• It wouldn’t be BC without delicious seafood, like the Bella Coola Valley Seafoods.

• Driving and circle Tours rs are available all around to see the beauty of the area in comfort!


• Several hotels, inns and lodges offer not just a pleasant stay, but a pleasant meal as well.

• Familiar, big city brand restaurants will greet you, like Boston Pizza, McDonalds and Subway if you’re in the mood for something quick and familiar. If you’re wanting to try something new, why not check out the local bakery and deli?

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PULSE PODCAST Residency • Finances  •  Parenting 26

PU SE The Pulse newsletter is always looking for submissions from residents like you! If you have article ideas, announcements, or other interesting insights about life as a resident doctor, please contact us at: info@residentdoctorsbc.ca


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November 2020 Pulse: The COVID 2020 Issue