The JSC’s RCME Community Program aims to give physicians more control over collective learning activities, reduce the challenges of accessing funds, and improve relationships among health system partners in rural communities. Ultimately, it aims to improve the capacity of local health care systems to address the needs of community members. There are three important pieces of information that physicians should know about the implementation of this program.
1. The RCME Community Program will include collaboration between specialists and family physicians
With the new program, all physicians will participate in developing a model that identifies community RCME needs and creates a plan for addressing those needs. In rural areas where specialists are present, this requires specialists and family physicians to work together to develop a model and to make decisions that benefit all physicians and improve the ability of health care services to respond to the needs of the community. In some parts of the province, this has been happening already and in other communities, there is no established practice for this.
As part of the development of a local model, family physicians and specialists will work together to develop practices, processes and roles that will sustainably integrate the perspectives of all physicians in identifying community RCME needs and planning activities to address the community’s needs. This process starts with sharing information about the process with all physicians in the community and involving a group of physicians that includes both family physicians and specialists (where there are specialists in the community). The implementation team will reach out to community RCME leaders and where specialists are present, will integrate their perspectives and interests in creating a local model.
2. Additional funding for rural communities that meets the needs of specialists and family physicians with sub-specialties
In our engagement phase, we heard that specialists and GPs with sub-specialty interests find it much more difficult to have their community RCME needs met locally – this is a function of having few colleagues locally and being far from a critical mass of others delivering the same services and procedures. In response, JSC is creating an additional pool of funding called “SPIFI” which stands for “Specialist, Sub-specialty, Indigenous and Funding for Innovations.”
Stay tuned for more information on SPIFI in the coming months!
3. Approval of a local model for RCME Community Program planning, development and delivery
One of the requirements for communities accessing annual funding, is that the model for the RCME Community Program must be acceptable to the community of physicians. This includes several elements, including:
- Every physician in the community receives information about the RCME Community Program and has an opportunity to participate in the development of a local model;
- Approval of the local model requires all relevant physician groups to review and approve the model that is developed;
- Reporting of the agreed upon model to RCCbc/JSC.