Federal Funding to Transform Primary Care Training in Canada

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SAC is proud to play a role in Team Primary Care by developing Curricula to benefit patients with communication disorders in comprehensive interprofessional primary care (CIPC).
This article originally appeared on teamprimarycare.ca on June 8, 2023

The Team Primary Care initiative will transform the training of current and future generations of primary care practitioners, enhancing their ability to work in interprofessional teams.

MISSISSAUGA — June 8, 2023 — Today, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health, on behalf of the Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Disability Inclusion, announced a federal investment of $45.3 million in grant funding from Employment and Social Development Canada to the Foundation for Advancing Family Medicine. These funds will spearhead Team Primary Care: Training for Transformation, an initiative designed to build the capacity of interprofessional, comprehensive primary care practitioners working in teams through improved training, retention and planning tools.

The funding was awarded under the Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program’s solicited call for proposals. At its core, Team Primary Care aims to enhance the readiness of a supported primary care workforce to deliver more team-based comprehensive services with greater continuity and coordination of care with a whole person orientation. This initiative includes dedicated funding to support the optimization of existing primary care teams through the integration of new team members.

“Many living in Canada currently do not have access to comprehensive primary care. This reality, compounded by the health workforce shortage, makes team-based care a valuable model for the delivery of comprehensive primary care,” said Claudia Zuccato Ria, Executive Director of the Foundation for Advancing Family Medicine. “By reimagining training for both current and future generations of primary care practitioners, we are launching a foundational component of broader primary care reform, bringing us closer to connecting everyone in Canada to interprofessional teams providing comprehensive continuing primary care.”

Team Primary Care is co-led by the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Canadian Health Workforce Network, in partnership with over 100 health professional and educational organizations across Canada.

“The combination of funding for education, infrastructure change and enabling collaboration between the health practitioner community are essential to build a primary care workforce that’s ready to deliver team-based care in Canada.” said Dr. Ivy Oandasan, Co-Lead of Team Primary Care and Director of Education at the College of Family Physicians of Canada. “The Team Primary Care initiative is based on this premise and is an important first step in the right direction.”

Team Primary Care is now collaborating with over 100 partners to develop over 40 practitioner-specific, primary care team training projects, with further projects anticipated to enhance, align, and increase readiness for practicing in this collaborative care delivery approach. Team Primary Care will also create and adapt interprofessional training approaches across health professions including support for the full participation of Indigenous and internationally educated practitioners, maximizing their integration.

“Team Primary Care is a unique and timely initiative that brings together the full range of primary care practitioners to train and learn how to work together,” said Ivy Lynn Bourgeault, Co-Lead of Team Primary Care and Lead of the Canadian Health Workforce Network and Professor, University of Ottawa. “Our initiative will increase the recognition of how each practitioner group can contribute to addressing the challenges individuals in Canada face in accessing primary care.”

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Alexandre Lalonde
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About the Foundation for Advancing Family Medicine

The Foundation for Advancing Family Medicine (FAFM; formerly known as the Research and Education Foundation) was established in 1994 to better serve the future of family medicine. The FAFM is dedicated to advancing the discipline of family medicine through research and education initiatives. The FAFM offers numerous awards, grants, and scholarships, as well as initiatives to support the training and continuing professional development of medical students, family medicine residents, and family physicians at every stage of their careers.

About the College of Family Physicians of Canada

The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) is a professional organization representing more than 42,000 members nationwide. The College establishes the standards for and accredits postgraduate family medicine training in Canada’s 17 medical schools. It reviews and certifies continuing professional development programs and materials that enable family physicians to meet certification and licensing requirements. The CFPC provides high-quality services, supports family medicine teaching and research, and advocates on behalf of the speciality of family medicine, family physicians, and the patients they serve.

About the Canadian Health Workforce Network

The Canadian Health Workforce Network is a knowledge exchange network of researchers, decision-makers, and other knowledge users with expertise in health workforce planning, policy and management. Its internationally recognized, interdisciplinary and intersectoral health workforce research expertise provides an excellent foundation to lead large, multi-stakeholder projects to address complex health workforce challenges while building capacity in both official languages.

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