While I appreciate the opinions expressed by Dr Wong, our name change was implemented to help our association and its members become more influential in promoting positive change in our health care system. This is what our members expressed they wanted us to be able to do.
To truly achieve influence, we needed to connect with the public (patients) whose support is essential to successfully advocate with government and health authorities. Through consultation with the public, we found we had low name recognition. Many people didn’t know who we were or what we did. We also found that when someone says they’re going to see their doctor they’re not talking about their dentist or naturopath. This name change clarifies who the doctors of BC are and who we represent.
It’s interesting to note that two other provinces are now using doctors in their name—Doctors Manitoba and Nova Scotia Doctors. In both cases, they tell us this is working well in terms of achieving their goals and in their engagement with members and the public.
I’m also pleased to say that at our recent annual general meeting, an overwhelming majority of members reaffirmed the name change. Please note that our legal name remains the BC Medical Association, and members still need to be medical doctors.
—Bill Cavers, MD
President, Doctors of BC
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