Dear consultant doctor: An open letter from a couple of family physicians  (more)

How do we work together more effectively?

Dear Colleague, we wish to outline some common sources of frustration for FPs. We wish to work together better, to identify pain points and address them respectfully. Some concerns of FPs, like suboptimal availability of consultants, can potentially be addressed with system changes such as increasing the number of physicians and a central intake system with a “next available” referral option for more services. Other concerns may be addressed by individual physicians ordering and following up on required tests (blood work and diagnostic imaging); titrating medications and considering limited use criteria when prescribing; referring directly to colleagues if a referral must be re-routed; accepting referrals from the community (rather than restricting the referral source to the emergency department), accepting a well-written referral letter rather than requesting a specific intake form; facilitating timely communication; and arranging appointments with patients directly.

Thank you for listening, dear colleague. We do appreciate you. We leave the door open to hear feedback so that we can better support each other.

Take care and stay well.


Matthew J. Schurter

Alykhan Abdulla

Posted: January 13, 2023 by Alykhan Abdulla