In February, the Committee on the Accreditation of Canadian Medical Schools (CACMS) officially approved our Undergraduate Medical Education (UGME) Accreditation Action Plan, which represents another milestone successfully crossed in our timeline. We are very encouraged by CACMS’ support. We continue to make good headway with the plan’s implementation, highlights of which I shared at our first Faculty Council meeting earlier this year and which I have updated and provided below.
While we have much to accomplish, the progress we are making is significant and attributable to the dedicated efforts of countless faculty and staff members, as well as to the ongoing commitment and collaboration of our students. Thank you, everyone.
The UGME Accreditation Action Plan and supporting documents are available on our website at all times, but should ever you have questions, please contact me.
The following represents highlights of the actions detailed in our plan online:
- The new MDCM Program Committee, responsible for all curricular decision-making, has been officially constituted. The restructuring of this committee represents an important step forward, one CACMS had identified as critical to our future accreditation. Its mandate and other material are available on the UGME website.
- The following key Faculty positions have been successfully filled:
- Dr. Annette Majnemer was appointed Vice-Dean, Education, a new position created to bring strategic support to the Faculty’s educational mission, including to its accreditation efforts. Among her immediate priorities, Dr. Majnemer recently completed a review of the Faculty’s MedWell Office to address another key area of accreditation.
- Dr. Beth-Ann Cummings was appointed Associate Dean, Undergraduate Medical Education, replacing acting Associate Dean Donald Boudreau. In addition to leading UGME and the MDCM program, Dr. Cummings is responsible for the successful implementation of the accreditation action plan, together with her team.
- Dr. Lesley Fellows was appointed Assistant Dean, Academic Affairs, responsible for developing faculty mentorship programs and assisting the VP-Dean and Vice-Dean, Academic Affairs, in ensuring the highest standards of professionalism and conduct are upheld within the Faculty on campus and at all of our clinical teaching sites.
- The Faculty Council (FC), also newly constituted, held its first meeting in February. The FC is one of several actions that aims to increase the robustness of our overall governance, with representation from across the Faculty. FC meetings are open to all Faculty members, including professors, students, residents, researchers and staff, unless otherwise indicated. The FC presentation, video-recording and minutes of the first meeting are available online.
- Recruitment is under way to add resources to the Faculty’s MedWell Office, to support medical students that may be in distress and to address issues related to the learning environment, be they on campus or at any one of our many clinical teaching sites, which represents another accreditation-critical issue.
- In regards to non-biomedical topics cited in our accreditation report, supplemental modules in Pain Management, Medical Ethics and Women’s Health have been delivered to the Class of 2016 in February/March, as required. Additional content on these topics is also being incorporated into the new curriculum.
- A new student survey called the Medical Education Experience (MEE) Survey, has been created by the Program Evaluation and Curricular Outcomes Committee, a subcommittee of the MDCM Program Committee. Most items in the survey refer directly to accreditation standards and elements. Capturing internal data from our students is another area CACMS had identified as critical. The survey will be launched in April/May of this year and will be repeated every two years.
- A communications audit within UGME has been initiated with the goal of developing a more formal, robust, coordinated and effective communications strategy for UGME students, faculty and staff. This, too, has been identified by CACMS as critical to future accreditations.
- A comprehensive review of the Gatineau integrated clerkship has been conducted by Associate Dean, Faculty Development, Miriam Boillat, together with an external reviewer from the University of Sherbrooke. Additionally, under Dr. Boillat’s leadership, annual retreats for clerkship directors and clinical chairs in Gatineau are being organized, with the first one scheduled for this coming May.
- The VP-Dean has mandated an external review, to be carried out this June, to confirm whether we are indeed on track in addressing the critical areas identified in the accreditation report.
- Additionally, self-evaluation visits in October and January have also been scheduled in order to prepare for the CACMS limited site visit in 2017.
The Accreditation Implementation Committee, which oversees the implementation of the UGME Accreditation Action Plan and the preparation of the next CACMS visit, has confirmed the following milestones in our timeline going forward:
- June 2-3, 2016 – External Review (as described above)
- October 20-21, 2016 – Self-evaluation #1 to assess status
- January 12-13, 2017 – Self-evaluation #2 to assess status
- February 2017 – CACMS limited site visit (pending written CACMS confirmation)
We look forward to the CACMS limited site visit in February 2017 and are confident every change we introduce represents an improvement in the administration of our MDCM program for our students, which is our ultimate goal.
Once again, should you have questions or concerns about the UGME Accreditation Action Plan or our MDCM program, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Vice-Principal (Health Affairs)
Dean of the Faculty of Medicine
April 12, 2016