How physicians are influencing BC’s digital health solutions 

November 30, 2023

Doctors of BC is committed to ensuring the physician voice is reflected throughout the Ministry of Health’s development and implementation of its provincial Digital Health Strategy. Our goal is to do all we can to make sure that any proposed digital health solutions align with your needs in a way that doesn’t create more work for you or add to already existing burdens.

In the last year, we hosted more than 80 engagement opportunities in which the upwards of 2,200 specialist and family physicians participated and shared vital feedback on several key focus areas that has greatly supported our efforts to ensure digital health solutions improve physicians’ professional lives.

2023 Digital Health update

Hearing from a broad range of physician voices, from all practice types, geographic locations, and specialties, is crucial for deepening our understanding of perspectives across the profession, and guiding how we advocate for you. Through a variety of touchpoints, including representation at provincial tables, participation in member-wide surveys, clinical advisory groups, interactive webinars, and our online engagement platform (Have Your Say), you are informing:

  • Doctors of BC’s strategic advocacy with government and our key health care partners 

  • The Ministry of Health/PHSA’s development and rollout of digital health projects 

These are just some of the key focus areas of our member engagement this year: 

  • EMRs: A member-wide survey around proposed options for EMR consolidation and governance with nearly 1,900 respondents re-confirmed a strong support for reducing EMRs to support interoperability and for a responsive EMR governance structure that provides full access to records with quality data. Feeback was shared with government to help inform future EMR work including the focus and responsibilities of a new collaborative EMR Governance Committee, as identified in the 2022 Physician Master Agreement (PMA). A list of our What We Heard reports on EMRs can be found here

  • Provincial Digital Referrals and Orders (DRO): Doctors of BC influenced government’s plans to develop an online solution to integrate digital referrals, consults, and order requisitions with EMRs. We held multiple member engagement sessions to enable family and specialist physicians to provide input on their clinical needs related to interoperability which in turn helped inform the government’s Request-for-Proposals (RFP) process. In the new year, physicians will have the opportunity to help design and inform the implementation of the Ocean platform through various member engagement sessions including speciality-specific working groups and early adoption users, among others. 

  • Provider Experience: To address one of the many administrative burdens you identified, Doctors of BC elevated physician input on PHSA’s consideration and early implementation of a solution (OneHealthID) to address challenges signing on and accessing provincial systems.

As we move into 2024, Doctors of BC will continue to engage with you on all key areas, with a priority focus on EMR governance and the work around the Provincial Digital Referrals Program (DRO). Visit our Digital Health engagement page to see the full list of priority topic areas we have and will continue to engage with you on, and to learn more about past engagements and for a full list of current or upcoming opportunities.