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The need for family medicine and primary care research

Primary care is the cornerstone of the health care system in Canada and family physicians make a significant contribution to it. Research is an element of practice as outlined in the CFPC’s Professional Profile. It creates the evidence that forms the foundation of our discipline, guides care, and informs health services planning and education. The ability to identify, study, and cite our own evidence is essential to reaffirm the value and impact of primary care, including family medicine, on Canadians’ health and the Canadian health care system. Explore our resources and connect with our community of researchers.

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Family Physicians’ Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic

CFPC Members Survey on COVID-19


The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) is surveying its members to learn how COVID-19 is affecting their practices. Given that many CFPC members are front-line health care workers, it is critically important to know how family doctors have changed their practices and how they are serving their patients and communities in new ways. We need to know the impact the pandemic continues to have on family doctors and family practices. These survey results will help us respond to members’ needs and advocate for support for the care they provide to their patients and communities.

CFPC members: Please look for the personalized survey invitation the CFPC sent to you in April 2021.
Can’t find your invitation? Please contact us at [email protected].
Be heard!

In April 2020 the College conducted a similar survey of members to learn how COVID-19 was affecting your practices at the start of the pandemic. Your input has been instrumental in shaping the CFPC’s response to the pandemic and in supporting members with new resources and continuing professional development. We used the survey data to help develop important advocacy messages and campaigns that address the needs and concerns of family doctors. We need to hear from CFPC members again to ensure that our efforts continue to respond to changing needs.

2020 2021
In April 2020... A year later...
73% of family doctors were screening patients for COVID-19. Are family physicians being appropriately engaged in vaccine rollout efforts?
22% of family doctors started work in new settings due to COVID-19. Throughout the pandemic, how have family doctors relieved pandemic pressures in a wide variety of care settings?
76% of family doctors reported reduced workloads and most (63%) were concerned about the financial impact on their practices. Are family physicians still experiencing reduced workloads, or are they working beyond their capacity? Are financial impacts still a major concern?
89% of family doctors were doing virtual visits and four out of five patient encounters were happening as virtual care. How is virtual care affecting the quality of patient care? How are virtual care and remote work affecting collaboration among members of health care teams?
66% of family doctors were coping well, but 5% were feeling burned out and were thinking of taking a break. How are family physicians doing now? How are their mental and emotional health? Are feelings of burn out changing?

Please look for the CFPC Members Survey on COVID-19 invitation in your email.
You can help answer these questions.
You can help the CFPC serve its members and their patients!

Highlights of the 2020 CFPC Members Survey on COVID-19 are available online.

Have questions? Please contact us at [email protected].

Creating a Stronger Base for Health Care Innovation
The College of Family Physicians of Canada continues to promote the critical importance of research in primary care. Read about our current advocacy efforts related to Canadian Institutes of Health Research funding and the need to enhance support for primary, home, and community health care research to improve the health of everyone in Canada.

Proposal for a CIHR institute of integrated primary, home, and community health care
Despite the critical importance of primary, home, and community care to the health of everyone in Canada, less than 3 per cent of Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) funding goes to primary care. In addition, most of this is time-limited strategic funding that will end soon.

The creation of an integrated primary, home, and community health care institute as part of the CIHR would position Canada as a leader in these research areas. It would also strengthen the capacity of these sectors to respond to future and emerging health care needs and challenges.

Please read and share the proposal provided here.

The CFPC's Position Statement: Supporting access to data in electronic medical records for quality improvement and research

The Section of Researchers’ (SOR’s) Blueprint for Family Medicine Research Success 2.0 (2018-2023)

Section of Researchers

The Section of Researchers (SOR) is the section of the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) that represents members who have an interest in primary care research in Canada. Members include family physicians, residents, medical students, and researchers from different professions and background, includes early-, mid-, and senior-career researchers.


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