Noel Corser

Any chance of changing the name to "Care Provided Virtually"? Maybe just me, but "virtual care" always sounds a bit like "not-really-care" or "not-as-good-as" care, when in some circumstances care provided virtually could be more appropriate than in-person care! The issue of cross-border virtual care is confusing. I'd suggest it's quite different for a CPSA-regulated Alberta doc to provide care virtually to an Ontario resident living in Ontario, than it is for an Alberta doc to provide virtual care to an Alberta patient, with whom they have an existing relationship, who's travelling in Ontario. Yet the draft SoP treats both the same. (Interestingly, the doc is allowed to be out-of-province, but not the patient). Presuming the point is to regulate cross-border "dial-a-doc" operations primarily, would it make more sense to tell docs who don't have a CPSA practice permit - get an Alberta license if you want to treat patients in Alberta, "unless it's a patient temporarily/newly-arrived in Alberta with whom you have an existing physician-patient relationship"? And tell Alberta docs the same thing for caring virtually for patients outside Alberta? And it doesn't really make sense to tell out-of-province docs they can only provide virtual care "in emergencies, where no other options exist" - there's always an Alberta ER open, but why load them up with patients needing a prescription refill from their regular doctor in New Brunswick, or advice about their peritoneal dialysis from their home team? Unfortunately, a "dial-a-doc" company could probably argue that Alberta patients called in BECAUSE they couldn't access other care options when they wanted it! By definition, virtual care can't be provided "in the same manner in which they apply to care provided in person" - paragraph 7. Reading through paragraph 9, it's clear this is aimed at episodic virtual care, not virtual care "thoughtfully used to promote continuity of care within the context of a therapeutic relationship". Doesn't make sense to require me to tell my patient my "name, location, and licensure status" every phone visit. I'm not at all clear on what's meant by paragraph 12, in the context of virtual care? What parts of the "full scope" of the prescribing-related SoPs can I dispense with? When can I just fire off a Rx for someone else's patient? It would help to clarify what this is addressing... "Appropriate assessment" is defined in the Glossary as no-physical-exam, which is generally felt to be the sticking point re. whether virtual assessment is appropriate. However, the SoP (paragraph 8) states the doc "must consider whether virtual care allows appropriate assessmentG of the presenting problem and, if it does not, must personally arrange for a timely in-person assessment..." If the glossary definition is used, there would never be a time when virtual care wasn't fine! 🙂 Suggest maybe removing that definition from the Glossary altogether?

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