Call for VCH Physician Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Working Group members

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The VCH Physician DEI Committee and working groups began in November 2019 following a presentation to the VCH Board of Directors. There are three working groups and an overarching committee initially composed of physicians from Vancouver Acute, Vancouver Community, and other representation across VCH. Over the last 18 months, new members from Richmond have joined the working groups, and members from all Communities of Care have attended focus groups and educational events. There has been tremendous support, enthusiastic participation, and leadership from the working group members over the last two years, and at this time, we are again asking physicians to join one of the working groups. To guide you in your choice of working group, a description of each and their previous and potentially new activities are described below.

Meaningful Metrics
Last year, this group developed and administered the VCH Diversity Survey for all medical staff across the health authority. The results are currently being analyzed and will be reported to the Medical Staff Associations (MSAs) and the VCH Board. The group is also working toward the integration of DEI metrics into the credentialing/reappointment process. Future activities for this group include exploring and recommending inclusion data collection processes, developing an annual public report on diversity metrics for departments/divisions, hosting events to highlight DEI initiatives at VCH, and compiling a repository of literature/podcasts and toolkits for physicians.

Culture and Environment
Over the last two years, this group has held a series of educational events for all members of the VCH physician community, including an annual International Women’s Day event, a two-part series on Anti-Asian Racism, several focus groups for women and BIPOC physicians, and a women’s “Lean In” leadership group. The Culture and Environment group is planning to continue hosting events and activities that explore all aspects of physician diversity, such as promoting inclusion and cultural safety, seeking initiatives to improve work/life balance, and supporting underrepresented physician groups to get involved.

Leadership Skills and Talent Management
This group has been working to inform physicians on how to approach leadership with a DEI lens. It has held an event to honour Indigenous leaders, reviewed and provided input on VCH practices to ensure a DEI lens has been included, piloted a mentorship program for emerging leaders, and will be hosting a leadership course in the fall. Additionally, the group will be exploring opportunities through DEI workshops, and creating opportunities for skill building and “safe and brave spaces.” This group is working toward finding ways to inform and influence policies, practices, and processes at VCH to ensure DEI principles are followed.

If you are interested in joining one of the above working groups, please apply here. Applications will be accepted until October 22, 2021.

Physicians from all VCH sites and Communities of Care are welcome to apply to any of the above groups. There is limited space in each working group, but we will attempt to capture diversity within each through an equitable and transparent process. We ask that you rank your choice of working groups if you wish to apply to more than one. Each of the groups meet monthly for one to two hours and physicians are encouraged to be active in one of the group projects. Chairs/co-chairs of the working groups will be decided amongst the group members at the first meeting. Chairs/co-chairs will also be asked to attend the DEI Oversight Committee that meets three to four times per year. Compensation is provided by sessional payments.

If you have any questions, please contact Lynn Straatman or Neli Remo.

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