The Royal College’s policies and programs will enable residents and specialists to acquire, maintain and enhance their competence during residency and throughout practice.
IMPLEMENTING COMPETENCE BY DESIGN
Competence by Design (CBD) is a multi-year initiative that will introduce a competency-based medical education (CBME) model of learning and assessment to resident training and specialty practice across Canada. CBME leverages an outcomes-driven approach to medical education that will better prepare and support physicians for the expectations of modern practice now and throughout their careers. Our commitment is to collaborate, engage and consult with Fellows, the medical education community, volunteers and other stakeholders throughout the design and implementation of CBD. In 2013, a detailed project and consultation plan was developed, and several projects got underway to support CBD implementation.
CANMEDS 2015: THE EVOLUTION OF THE CANMEDS FRAMEWORK
Under the CBD initiative, the Royal College continued its work on the CanMEDS 2015 project to update the CanMEDS Physician Competency Framework. In 2013, we convened 13 expert working groups and over a period of 8-10 months, they prepared a series of draft documents that will be available for wider consultation with Fellows, stakeholders in medical education and members of the public in early 2014. We also launched a comprehensive national consultation process. Phase 1 included sharing information and gathering feedback through a variety of means, including an online survey, a national advisory committee, ePanels, a Town Hall discussion, webinars and ongoing dialogue with key partners. From this process, the strengths, weaknesses and gaps of the current framework were identified. Planning is underway for Phase 2 consultations, which will focus on assembling feedback on the draft reports and finalizing the revised framework for an official launch in fall 2015.
FELLOWS SHOWCASE LEARNING WITH HIGH MOC PARTICIPATION
Fellows continued to demonstrate their commitment to lifelong learning, with more than 129,000 Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Program activities documented in MAINPORT by December 31, 2013. Efforts to improve and enhance the value of this tool and program in the short and long terms are underway, supported by the MOC Program Evaluation and the CBD initiative’s forthcoming development of greater ePortfolio capabilities in MAINPORT for practising physicians.
BRINGING CANMEDS 2015 TO LIFE WITH DRAFT MILESTONES
To support the work of CanMEDS 2015, draft milestones were developed through the efforts of 13 dedicated expert working groups (EWGs). These milestones will clearly define the expectations at each stage of residency and into practice, and guide learning and assessment to ensure the acquisition of competencies required for practice. Milestones will be integrated within the existing Roles of the CanMEDS Framework and subsequently be defined for all specialty training programs.
NEW UNIT TO SUPPORT THE CREATION OF FACULTY SUPPORT TOOLS FOR CBD
In response to feedback from partners in postgraduate medical education about the need for faculty development tools and services to support the implementation of Competence by Design (CBD), the Educational Product Development and Dissemination (EPD) unit has been created. This unit will work with project teams, subject matter experts and academic partners to support CBD implementation through the development of appropriate tools and products to ensure valuable and effective faculty development opportunities, and opportunities to share curriculum.
NUMBER OF APPROVED AFC (DIPLOMA) PROGRAMS RISES
The Royal College approved several new Areas of Focused Competence (AFC – Diploma) programs in 2013. The newly-approved disciplines include Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA) Oncology, Hepatology and Hyperbaric Medicine — approved at the spring Committee on Specialties (COS) meeting; as well as Solid Organ Transplantation, which was approved at the fall COS meeting. Part I applications for brachytherapy and adult thrombosis medicine were also approved in fall 2013.
ePORTFOLIO PROJECT ENTERS STAGE ONE OF DEVELOPMENT, WITH eDIPLOMA RELEASE
New online functionality was released as part of the eDiploma project (stage one of the Competence by Design initiative’s ePortfolio project). The resulting new “My Diploma” section in MAINPORT allows AFC (Diploma) trainees to track achievement of their competencies online as they progress in their training, and later to submit their portfolios electronically for assessment. A small group of Transfusion Medicine trainees are the first to pilot this tool, with further development and planned expansion for use by trainees in other AFC (Diploma) programs expected later in 2014.
PROGRESS ON THE PRACTICE ELIGIBILITY ROUTE FOR SPECIALISTS AND SUBSPECIALISTS
The Practice Eligibility Route (PER) offers two paths to Royal College certification for internationally-trained physicians who are already licensed and practising as specialists in Canada: Route A — traditional Royal College examination, and Route B — highly-structured, practice-based assessment/examination.
PER for specialists
- Route A: The certification exams have been opened to candidates in 14 specialties for the 2014 examination cycle. Two Psychiatry candidates passed their Royal College certification exams in the spring 2013 examination session.
- Route B: The PER for specialists continues to advance with planning of its first in-practice assessment in Psychiatry, to be piloted in 2014.
PER for sub-specialists and AFC (Diplomas)
- Route A: More than 550 applications for fall exams in four subspecialties were received. Work also began on a PER for AFC (Diploma) programs.
MOC PROGRAM ADJUSTS ITS CREDIT SYSTEM TO MEET LEARNING NEEDS
To ensure it evolves to meet learning needs, several important changes to the MOC Program were introduced: (1) There will no longer be any maximum or cap on the percent of credits that can be earned in any one section during an MOC cycle and (2) Fellows and MOC participants will be required to complete a minimum of 25 credits in each program section during their five-year cycle (for cycles starting on or after January 1, 2014). As of July 1, 2013, Resident Affiliates who use MAINPORT to document their learning activities can carry forward up to 75 credits (25 per section) into their first MOC cycle following certification and Royal College Fellowship.
CERTIFICATION EXAMS ASSESS MORE THAN 3600 CANDIDATES
More than 2600 candidates sat for their Royal College specialty certification exams in spring 2013, and another 1070 sat for the fall subspecialty examinations.
Update on Specialty Committee activities
Specialty committees continued to play an active role throughout 2013 in advancing professional training and standards of practice in the various medical and surgical disciplines.