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November Messenger 2019

November Messenger 2019 | Posted November 14, 2019

The results are in-meet your newest CPSA Council members

Election season is over for another year and CPSA Council will have some new faces around the Council table in 2020.

Three physician members will join Council for the first time next year and one incumbent returns for a second, three-year term. Below, they tell us what they are looking forward to most about their role as CPSA Councillor:

Dr. Richard Buckley

“This opportunity to serve on CPSA Council provides me, a semi-retired surgeon, with a chance to get involved with interesting people, making complex decisions around tough personal and clinical problems. The definition of wisdom is the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment. Hopefully, with the help of the many different members of CPSA, these next few years will be an enlightening and interesting time. I hope to be a net contributor in this process.” 

Dr. Christopher Fung 

“I am both humbled and excited to be elected to CPSA Council. Providing excellence in patient care while navigating a demanding and evolving health care environment is a challenge we all face. In my role as a CPSA Councillor, I look forward to addressing this and other as-yet unrecognized issues regularly over the coming years, through multi-disciplinary collaboration and thoughtful deliberation.”

Dr. Daisy Fung

“I am excited to serve you and our patients by sitting on CPSA Council! With challenges, changes and initiatives that are inevitable in an ever-evolving profession and healthcare environment, I will advocate for patient safety and their best interests, together with those of our profession. As a female family physician and mother of young children, I aim to use my unique experiences and perspectives on Council to further our goals and grow as a regulatory body. Thank you for giving me this exciting opportunity!”

Dr. John O’Connor

“I am honoured to be re-elected by my peers to serve on CPSA Council for a further term-thank you! There are many other physicians who are as concerned as I am about the need to represent and advocate for rural communities. I consider myself so lucky and appreciate this opportunity.

We have seen crucial issues come up in the past three years: the opioid crisis, MAID and Bill 21, to mention a few. It has been truly amazing to be involved in very intense, high-level and important debate and regulation around such important aspects of health care. The team at CPSA is extraordinary and a joy to work with, and the next three years will no doubt prove to be as memorable as the past term has been. I hope I can truly justify your vote of confidence in me and represent you well and fully at CPSA Council.”


Congratulations to the successful candidates!
Find out more about CPSA Council here.


We hope to encourage even more physicians to vote in future Council elections. If you did not vote this year, please take a moment to tell us why by clicking here.


Annual Renewal is now open!

We sent you an email on Nov. 4 with instructions and links to complete your annual renewal. If you didn’t see this email in your inbox, check your junk email folder. Still can’t find it? Email us.

Before Dec. 31, 2019, log in to the Physician Portal to:

  • Complete your Renewal Information Form (RIF).
  • Complete any Professional Corporation Information Forms (PCIF), if applicable*.
  • Pay your fees.

*For PCs with multiple shareholders: Only the designated physician will see the PC renewal information. Once completed, the PC permit and receipt will be posted to the practice profile of ALL shareholders.

If you enrolled in our Pre-Authorized Payment (PAP) plan, don’t forget to submit your Information Form(s) by Dec. 31. PAP enrolment deadline is Nov. 21.

Retiring or withdrawing from practice? We still need your RIF

You just got a CPSA renewal notice, but won’t be practising next year. Do you still need to complete a Renewal Information Form (RIF)? The answer is yes.

By completing your RIF, we can update our records and remove you from further annual renewal reminder notices.

What you need to do:

1) LOG IN to the Physician Portal and complete the Renewal Information Form (RIF).

2) FILL IN the first question regarding your status for 2020. When you indicate you are retiring or withdrawing from practice:

  • Your form will be much shorter, only asking for necessary contact information.
  • You will not have to make payment at the end of the form.
  • We will not issue you a practice permit.

Also, please make sure you give your patients ample notice and arrange for another physician to take over their care.

For more information, review our Closing or Leaving a Medical Practice standard of practice or email

Important reminders about Connect Care

Please check for results regularly and remind patients about Netcare

Since AHS Connect Care was launched in the Edmonton Zone two weeks ago, there have been a few issues that AHS is working hard to address. For those who have been impacted, we understand this is a challenging situation and appreciate the extra work you’ve put in to ensure your patients are taken care of.

If you have been impacted by these issues with Connect Care, there are a few ways you can help ensure patient care is not affected:

  1. Make sure your correct provider ID and submitter ID are included on all lab order requisitions, as well as your complete clinic address.
  2. Cross reference your results and make sure you have received all the reports you are expecting.
  3. Log into your EMR and update your lab requisitions, as well as any standing, patient-held lab orders.
  4. Remind your patients that they have access to Netcare and can watch for their results as well.

For more information, please refer to the email sent by CPSA to physicians last week, as well as the AHS bulletin.

For questions or feedback on:

TPP Alberta update

Hot off the press: 2018 TPP Alberta Atlas just released!

The 2018 TPP Alberta Atlas is now available at

The TPP Atlas provides an overview of provincial TPP Alberta medication dispense data for opioids and benzodiazepines/z-drugs for 2018. Five-year trend data is also included for some measures.

Highlights or enhancements for the 2018 TPP Alberta Atlas include:

  • Age and sex standardized rates for the summary tables (e.g., Table 1 and Table 11).
  • Enhanced map visualization of population and rates of opioid and benzodiazepine prescribing (e.g., Figure 5).
  • Graphs showing the population of each geographic area, sorted according to population size (e.g., Figure 6a).
  • Five-year trend graphs for each of the top five Pharmacy Local Aggregate Geographies (PhLAG) for each of the seven measures (e.g., Figure 6b).

Prescription pad orders-December cut-off dates

To ensure receipt of your TPP Alberta prescription pads before the holiday season, please note the following dates for orders in December:

Order date          Cut-off time                                      

Dec. 2                    8 a.m.

Dec. 9                    8 a.m.

Dec. 13                 12 p.m. (Noon)

TPP Alberta prescription pad orders will resume on Jan. 6, 2020.

Prescription pad deliveries

The address for delivery of TPP Alberta secure prescription pads should be that of your workplace, not home. Even if you are providing locum services, the address of the clinic in which you will be practicing should be provided.

Significant issues exist when no one is available to accept home receipt of TPP Alberta prescription pads. Only under extenuating circumstances should your home address be provided for pad delivery purposes.

Thank you for your cooperation with this request.

Questions? Email

High Prairie and High Level Regional Tour-here’s what we heard

On Monday, Nov. 4, CPSA held meetings with healthcare partners, physicians and residents living in High Prairie and High Level, to listen and learn about the challenges rural Albertans face in providing and receiving good medical care.

Physicians in both communities raised concerns about ensuring continuity of care for rural Albertans when it comes to accessing specialists and diagnostic tests. Physicians also wanted to discuss opioid prescribing in their communities, the MD Snapshot reports, and the kinds of prescribing practices that are monitored and investigated by CPSA. Some physicians in attendance shared experiences about having to manage violent patients in acute care settings and sought advice on how to properly handle these situations.

At all five of CPSA’s meetings, the challenges of physician recruitment to rural areas and the limited access to mental health resources in remote communities were major topics of discussion.

This Regional Tour marked the 35th and 36th iterations of CPSA’s provincial outreach initiative and we’d like to thank all those who took the time to connect with us. If you would like CPSA to visit your community, please contact Marian Stuffco, our Government and Strategic Relations Advisor.

Rectal bleeding and colon cancer-a time for action

CPSA continues to receive, on a regular basis, concerns from patients whose colon cancer diagnosis was seen as significantly delayed. There are several themes that are recurrent in the matters seen, including:

  1. Lack of a fulsome history review on patient presentation, particularly when reviewing risk stratification and presenting symptoms.
  2. A lack of fulsome physical examination, particularly rectal examination.
  3. Insufficient investigation, especially a failure to request urgent lower gastrointestinal endoscopy.
  4. Inappropriate investigation, including the use of fecal immunochemical testing (FIT) with frank rectal bleeding and/or a change in bowel habit.

The situations we review usually include concerns in more than one of the above areas. Typically, the patient has a presentation that included rectal bleeding, the attending physician takes a superficial history, does not perform (or offer) a rectal examination and then orders a FIT. Increasingly, these patients are younger than 50 years of age, a ‘cut off’ in typical screening programs for asymptomatic patients. With similar patient presentations, we should all remind ourselves that this type of patient is no longer in the typical screening population-rather each individual is a unique case and should be approached in an individualized fashion.

Questions? Contact Dr. Michael Caffaro, CPSA Complaints Director, at


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