2021 YEAR IN REVIEW
Reflections from the President
This past year has filled me with pride and admiration for the resilience and determination consistently displayed by Alberta’s family physicians. Faced with adversity from an ever-changing pandemic and accompanying rapid legislation change, you took on roles managing COVID in hospitals, testing centres, long-term care, assisted living, and emergency, often in addition to regular clinic duties. Despite the pivot to virtual care, the lack of contracts, financial stresses, and a large care deficit in various areas of the province, Alberta doctors continued to exemplify why Family Docs Rock. In your honour, we celebrated the value of family medicine with the public through the emotional “I Stand” video, and by sharing physician and patient stories. I would like to sincerely thank each and every one of you for your contributions.
Disruption. Innovation. Defeat. Triumph. These descriptors come to mind when reflecting on 2021. With crisis, can come opportunity. When Canada’s dark, colonial past came to light the ACFP paused to reflect on our actions and inactions. We are committed to unlearning and re-educating in the spirit of reconciliation and will continue to work on the actions outlined in the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report. We will do better.
Throughout the uncertainty, the ACFP is proud to have accomplished many important events and achievements. The ACFP lobbied diligently for our members on a variety of topics including the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, health system reform, support for the Patient’s Medical Home (PMH), cautioning against health care corporatization, and more. We pledge to continue engaging in
advocacy while remaining consistent in providing quality education opportunities.
Our annual events and learning opportunities were adapted to make sure our members could get the most out of them safely. 2021 saw the first virtual Family Medicine Summit (Summit) and after years of webcasting experience, the Practical Evidence for Informed Practice (PEIP) conference was well positioned to deliver a fully virtual event. Working with partners, we also delivered “COVID Talks with Docs”, ensuring that all community-based teams were up to date and prepared during the pandemic.
The ACFP is a small but mighty organization, working hard to advance excellence in family practice and create a better future for our members. As we look forward to 2022, we hope to collect and activate your visions and aspirations through the Future of Family Medicine initiative. We will work with new and established coalitions, partners, alliances, and especially with you, to create a path
forward that leads to a fundamentally new and better way of serving Albertans and supporting a rewarding future in family medicine that we can all be proud of.
Sudha Koppula, BSc, MD, MClSc, CCFP, FCFP
Alberta College of Family Physicians