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Providing care during the Omicron wave
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, bringing new challenges for healthcare teams. With the Omicron variant so prevalent in our communities, CPSA has updated our COVID-19 guidance for community medical clinics. This includes more detailed guidance on respiratory protection for physicians and clinic staff who are interacting with COVID-symptomatic or positive patients.
We encourage physicians to apply additional measures to protect their patients, their teams and themselves from contracting COVID-19. Our guidance outlines practical steps you can take. For example, physicians may offer virtual care appointments when possible and appropriate. Please review the updated Virtual Care standard of practice to learn about expectations for virtual medicine.
Throughout the pandemic, we have seen how physician-patient interactions may become emotional and difficult. If a patient becomes abusive toward a physician, staff member or other patients because a vaccination exemption request is denied, you have the right to ask that patient to leave the premises. You and your team are not expected to tolerate this type of behaviour.
In April 2020, when we were still in the early stages of the pandemic, CPSA Registrar Dr. Scott McLeod reflected on the challenges physicians face in providing patient care during a health emergency. His message remains true today: “Physicians should not be reluctant to provide care, even when it may be extremely difficult to follow some components of CPSA’s Standards of Practice. CPSA will always consider the individual circumstances and context if a complaint arises during the COVID-19 pandemic. In an emergency situation, failure to meet standards is not considered unprofessional conduct if a physician can demonstrate they took all reasonable actions in their service to patients.”
Thank you for your dedication to patient safety. Please reach out to us if you have any questions.
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