Divisions of family practice around the province are working to support physicians in realizing the Patient Medical Home model of family practice. As this work gets underway, many physicians are seeking opportunities to implement ideas and take on leadership roles within initiatives in their communities. Dr Charuka Maheswaran is one of those doctors. Through her work with her division, Comox Valley, Dr Maheswaran found that increasingly she was hearing mention of vocabulary and concepts she was unfamiliar with and she wanted to learn more.

“With the start of the patient medical home implementation just around the corner, I wanted to be a functioning part of the conversation and not just a confused bystander.”

Dr Maheswaran enrolled in the seventh cohort of the GPSC Leadership and Management Development Program, a customized program offered in partnership with the Executive Education Beedie School of Business, SFU. The course, she says, was “enlightening.” She envisions using her learnings in many aspects of her work as a physician, both in leadership roles with the division and in her interactions with patients.

“What I have learned has daily uses, with physician and non-physician colleagues as well as with patients.  It has been especially useful in augmenting my governance roles.  It’s as if things are clicking together in my head and things are just making more sense.”

An important component in realizing the patient medical home model of family practice is incorporating health care teams into physicians’ practices. As physicians undertake this work they may wish to enhance their management and relationship building skills.  As Dr Maheswaran discovered, the Leadership Management and Development Program teaches important skills in this area as well.  

“The course takes you through step by step from self-awareness to implementation of ideas. It helps you understand why people do the things they do.  And the mysterious alchemy of management is explained.”

Dr Maheswaran’s learnings from the program led her to realize the ways in which management training can benefit all physicians.

“I have come to realise that everyone who is in medicine should do a management course.  There is so much to be learned from the business world.  They are not separate to us and we are not superior to them.  The nobility of medicine can be a millstone that impedes our deepened understanding of the processes that drive all humans, regardless if that profit is money or health.”  

“I have been telling so many people they should do the course . . . I would love to see a day where all medical personnel have ongoing leadership training.”

To learn more about the GPSC Leadership and Management Development Program, click here