News from the Doctors Technology Office

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 62, No. 4, May 2020, Pages 138-139 News

Guide to using dictation software in medical practices

A new resource from the Doctors Technology Office provides support for physicians who are in the process of adopting dictation software or are considering making the transition. The guide, Using Dictation Software in Medical Practices, is a collaboration of the Doctors Technology Office and the College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC’s Physician Practice Enhancement Program. It outlines:

  • Benefits of dictation software (with journal references).
  • Types of dictation software.
  • Implementation planning for practices transitioning from a manual system.
  • Questions to ask dictation software vendors when deciding which dictation offering best suits your practice.

Many practices have found the initial setup and ongoing subscription expenses outweighed by both improved patient care stemming from more accurate documentation and a more efficient documentation process leading to long-term savings. Those who would like assistance with planning dictation software implementation, improving usage of their current system, or engaging with vendors are invited to contact the Doctors Technology Office at The guide is available online at

New forms guidelines and best practices

Creating new forms and updating forms has been a longstanding pain point for physicians, clinic staff, EMR vendors, and form creators. While a provincial e-forms project is underway to help address frustrations, the Doctors Technology Office has developed an interim guide, Forms Guidelines and Best Practices, to assist with creating, editing, and distributing forms. The guide offers recommendations for creating and updating forms, how to determine whether a form is needed, and how to support the updating process. The Doctors of Technology Office is available to provide ongoing support for forms development and can help connect form producers with the e-forms project team and EMR vendors as needed. For questions, guidance, or help on engagement, contact the Doctors Technology Office at View the guide online at

Virtual care support

To assist physicians in employing virtual care within their practice, the Doctors Technology Office has developed a variety of virtual care resources. To accommodate increasing requests for immediate support, the office will also be holding seminars and implementing interim measures.

Detailed information and links to online resources is available at

For information and direct one-on-one support with implementing virtual care or health technology, contact the Doctors Technology Office at: 604 638-5841 (1 800 665 2262),, or visit

. News from the Doctors Technology Office. BCMJ, Vol. 62, No. 4, May, 2020, Page(s) 138-139 - News.

Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.

About the ICMJE and citation styles

The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.

An alternate version of ICMJE style is to additionally list the month an issue number, but since most journals use continuous pagination, the shorter form provides sufficient information to locate the reference. The NLM now lists all authors.

BCMJ standard citation style is a slight modification of the ICMJE/NLM style, as follows:

  • Only the first three authors are listed, followed by "et al."
  • There is no period after the journal name.
  • Page numbers are not abbreviated.

For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit

BCMJ Guidelines for Authors

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