Doctors of BC Annual Meeting 2015

Issue: BCMJ, vol. 57, No. 6, July August 2015, Pages 230-233 Beyond Medicine

6 June 2015, Pan Pacific Hotel, Vancouver, BC

With the Doctors of BC Annual Business Meeting and General Assembly happening in the midst of the remarkable runoff vote for president-elect between Drs Brian Day and Alan Ruddiman, there was a sense of anticipation in the room. Would there be fireworks? Tough questions? An impromptu debate between the two contests? None of these things came to pass, and Drs Granger Avery and Lloyd Oppel ran the meeting and assembly without incident.

Update on Wang case
CEO Allan Seckel, anticipating a question, provided an update on the state of the Dr Wang vs the BCMA case. The Supreme Court of Canada denied Dr Wang’s application for leave to appeal, and what remains is the question of who pays for the litigation. Doctors of BC has insurance and a court declaration saying the association is entitled to the payment of its legal expenses by the insurer. The insurance company will attempt to recover as much of what it must pay the association as it can from Dr Wang, but that aspect is out of the association’s hands. 

Financial picture
As chair of the Audit and Finance Committee, Dr Mark Corbett provided an update on association finances. The audited financial statements for 2014 show that the association has a surplus of $708 555, intentionally less than last year’s surplus as the goal was to improve the budgeting process and have less of a surplus at year-end. Dr Corbett noted that the student bursary reserve fund is $2 million, while the annual cost of student bursaries is $218 750. Dr Brian Brodie, a past president and past chair of the Finance Committee, observed that the student bursary reserve fund has not been increased for several years, and recommended that the committee consider increasing the amount of support given to medical students.

Dr Corbett noted that we have 13 758 active members and a slow but steady growth in membership. The last dues increase was in 2013, and given the association’s surplus, the committee proposed a motion that there be no dues increase in 2016, which was carried. Dr Corbett noted that the decision to propose no dues increase was not taken lightly, and that in the next year or two the committee may need to propose an increase.

The Finance Committee proposed a motion, which was carried, “That the Doctors of BC honoraria rates for the Board Directors and Executive Committee members be increased annually by the average increase in MSP sessional rates as defined in the 2014 Master Agreement.” The last increase to these rates was on 1 July 2011.

Dr Mark Corbett, Dr Michael Curry, and Ms Michelle Chiu were elected by the assembly as the members of the Audit and Finance Committee for the coming year.

Motion on influenza
Dr Jannie Du Plessis proposed a motion “That the Doctors of BC consider whether any new influenza control program is supported by reputable scientific research, meets the requirements of informed consent, and respects the Charter of Rights of Canadians.” Numerous physicians spoke to the motion, which was ultimately passed by a strong majority.

Governance changes
Governance Committee Chair Dr Bill Cavers spoke about the numerous changes the committee had made and is in the process of making, including reviewing board structure and functioning; electoral processes; assisting the Board in reviewing committees’ terms of reference; and process and timing of selection of caucus members to the CMA. The committee is now working on a “green paper” on governance, and will be asking for broad member input to the paper this fall. The green paper will then be revised into a “light green paper,” Dr Cavers joked, sent back to members for more input, and then finally a white paper that the Governance Committee hopes to put to a referendum in the spring of 2016.

Students discuss presidential election 
Medical student Mr Nitai Gelber addressed the Board, noting that the presidential election had created a lot of discussion among medical students, but that they felt frustrated and excluded because they couldn’t vote. He was directed to speak to incoming President Dr Charles Webb, as continuing to improve engagement with students and residents is one of his key areas of focus. Mr Gelber applied to and was recommended by the Doctors of BC Nominating Committee to be a member of the association’s caucus to the General Council of the CMA, and he will be part of the BC delegation in Halifax in August.

Wong recognized for BCMJ covers
Based on a comment from the floor from Dr Richard Merchant, Dr Avery thanked Mr Jerry Wong for the excellent work he has done as cover artist on the BCMJ over the course of over 35 years. The meeting joined in thanking Mr Wong.

Learn more about Doctors of BC
To learn more about Doctors of BC activities and operations, please read the online Doctors of BC 2014–2015 Annual Report, its associated 2014–2015 White Report, and the full financial statements, available at

Doctors of BC Elected Officials 2015–2016
President: Dr Charles Webb
Past President: Dr Bill Cavers
President-elect: Dr Alan Ruddiman
Chair of the General Assembly: Dr Trina Larsen Soles
Honorary Secretary Treasurer: Dr Eric Cadesky

Award winners
CMA Honorary Membership Award
Dr Richard Beauchamp
Dr Alexander “Jack” Burak
Dr John Harry “Jack” Chritchley
Dr Judith Hall
Dr Darlene Hammell
Dr Victor Huckell
Dr David Klaassen
Dr Daniel MacCarthy
Dr Shaila Misri
Dr Peter Newbery
Dr Mark Schonfeld
Dr Laurence John Turner

Doctors of BC Silver Medal of Service
Dr Dorothy Shaw
Dr David Robert Shaw
Dr Larry Goldenberg
Dr Don Rix Award
Dr Linda Warren

Dr Bachop Awards
Gold Medal for Distinguished Service—Dr Carole Williams
Silver Medal in General Practice—Dr Matthew Petzold

Dr Cam Coady Award
Dr David Hardwick

Doctors of BC Honorary Member Award
Dr Michael F. Myers

Doctors of BC Changemaker Award
Student Advocate—Ms Elisa Assadi

Doctors of BC Excellence in Health Promotion Awards
Non-Profit Award—Across the Lake Swim Society
Corporate Award—Vancouver Island Women’s Clinic


Mr Draper is the managing editor of the BCMJ. This article has not been peer reviewed by the BCMJ Editorial Board.

Jay Draper. Doctors of BC Annual Meeting 2015. BCMJ, Vol. 57, No. 6, July, August, 2015, Page(s) 230-233 - Beyond Medicine.

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