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Covid Family Medicine; UBC Family Practice Resident Research Project: Family Medicine During COVID-19

COVID-19 Research Area(s): Healthcare Delivery & Policy

Family Medicine is the backbone of the Canadian medical system and Family physicians are entrusted with the difficult responsibility of maintaining and advocating for the well being of Canadians. Hospitals, intensive care units and emergency rooms have modified their workflow and increased their capacity to optimize the care that they can provide for the sick COVID-19 patients. At the same time, family physicians have been trying to maintain the health of the remainder of the 95% of the Canadian population. The COVID-19 pandemic has certainly effected the family medicine work environment and practice as well and therein lies the challenge; family physicians have to provide care to a greater number of individuals with a work environment that has been altered negatively. For example, with the increasing use of telehealth, family physicians have to make difficult diagnoses with less information. Family physicians invest a significant amount of time and energy to care for patients with chronic conditions. This requires frequent visits and monitoring. The pandemic has disrupted these efforts and there will be more acute deteriorations that will require more time and energy to correct. At present, there is a paucity of information regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the practice of family medicine. It is imperative to explore and document the changes that have occurred in family medicine as a result of this pandemic.