The RGPLP was established to assist rural GPs in taking reasonable periods of leave from their practices. The program provides locum physicians with opportunities to practice in rural British Columbia, and enables rural GP’s to secure subsidized relief for Continuing Medical Education (CME), vacation, and health needs. A locum pool is maintained by the RGPLP.
The Program: Host Physician Information
- Each rural physician who meets the eligibility criteria may request the following number of days of locum services per fiscal year based on community designation:
‘A’ communities – 43 days
‘B’ communities – 38 days
‘C’ communities – 33 days
‘D’ communities – 28 days
- Each request must be a minimum of 5 days, except for weekend assignments (see below).
- When a statutory holiday falls mid-week, a locum assignment may be a minimum of 4 days, but 5 days will be deducted from the host physician’s annual eligible number of days.
- Host physicians retain 40% MSP fee-for-service paid claims to cover overhead.
- To qualify, a host physician must be living and practicing medicine in an eligible RSA community with seven or fewer full-time general practitioners.
- Where there is a vacancy in the physician supply plan that is causing serious health care service access problems and/or an unreasonable workload being placed on a physician, the health authority may request locum coverage.
To Obtain a Locum
- Contact the RGPLP using the contact information provided to request a Locum Assistance Form. The RGPLP arranges locum assignments and assists with facilitating hospital privileges.
Host Physician Responsibilities
- Provide the locum, in advance of the assignment, with a list of the responsibilities the host physician expects the locum to fulfill, as well as a written explanation of all payments and other supports the locum can expect to receive during, and resulting from, the locum assignment.
- Provide reasonable accommodation for the locum physician.
- Submit claims within two weeks of the end date of the locum assignment, and refused claims within two weeks of the refusal date.
- Provide the locum with a detailed reconciliation of claims submitted.
- Ensure that the locum receives the on-call payment and retention premium, if applicable.
- Reimburse the locum for services not covered by MSP (i.e. private, ICBC, WCB and reciprocal billings), less the 40% recovered for overhead.
The Program: Locum Physician Information
- RGPLP locums are paid the following guaranteed daily rates based on community designation:
‘A’ communities – $900
‘B’ communities – $850
‘C’ communities – $800
‘D’ communities – $750
- When provided by the host physician and required by a rural hospital, a daily stipend of $50 per day for Emergency and Obstetrics/Gynecology and $100 per day for General Surgery and Anesthesia is paid. If more than one enhanced skill is provided, the maximum is $100 per day.
- Locums may also receive a proportionate payment for on-call and the retention premium, if agreed by by the host physician.
- Claims must be submitted using the host physician payment number and the locum physician practitioner number.
- Contact the RGPLP to request a Locum Application Form.
- Must have a current certificate in Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) or the Comprehensive Approach to Rural Emergencies Course (CARE); or the Certificate in Advanced Trauma Life Support (ATLS) is preferred.
- Must be a GP licensed to practice in British Columbia.
- Must be a member in good standing with the Canadian Medical Protective Association or carry alternative medical malpractice insurance.
- Must assign payment to the host physician payment number.
Weekend Locum Assignments
- The RGPLP also provides weekend locum coverage of three days of short-term relief for rural physicians. A weekend commences on Friday at 18:00 and concludes at 08:00 on Monday (or 08:00 Tuesday if a statutory holiday is part of the weekend).
- Payment for weekend coverage as described above is:
‘A’ communities – $2,450
‘B’ communities – $2,300
‘C’ communities – $2,150
‘D’ communities – $2,000
Contact Rural Practice Programs:
Rural Practice Programs
Ministry of Health Services
3-2, 1515 Blanshard Street
Victoria, BC, V8W 3C8
P: 250 952-3588
F: 250 952-3486