Task Force on Clinical Faculty

PDAD&C #34, 2001-2002

M E M O R A N D U M

TO:   Principals, Deans, Academic Directors and Chairs
FROM:   Adel Sedra, Vice-President and Provost
DATE:   January 11, 2002
RE:   Task Force on Clinical Faculty
cc:   The Bulletin

Clinical faculty play an essential role in the University and its Faculty of Medicine. They assume a significant responsibility for the education of over 800 undergraduate medical students and 1800 postgraduate clinical trainees. Increasingly, clinical faculty also play a significant role in the supervision of graduate students, now numbering in the hundreds. The clinical departments of the University also contribute significantly to the University's research mission. Together, they account for over half of the research funding flowing through the Faculty of Medicine and the University's affiliated hospitals.

The relationship of the clinical faculty with the University is however fundamentally different from that of other tenure-stream faculty. Clinical faculty do not work directly for the University. They are self-employed professionals who voluntarily pool their earnings from clinical practice, through practice plans. These plans then redistribute the earnings as income to the clinicians and help to subsidize the academic missions of the teaching hospitals and the University. As such, clinical faculty are governed by a complex set of policies and agreements including those of the University and the affiliated hospitals, the affiliation agreements between these organizations, and the practice plans. Furthermore, clinical faculty have accountability internally to the Medical Advisory Committee and clinical leadership of the hospital and externally to organizations such as their professional regulatory body, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario.

The governance arrangements between the University, the hospitals and the clinical faculty have remained essentially unchanged for a number of decades. Yet the working environment for clinical faculty has changed considerably and increased in complexity. As a result significant challenges have arisen in our relationships. Therefore, I am striking a task force that will examine issues related to clinical faculty at the University of Toronto in order to make recommendations to me on how the relationships can be optimized.

The task force will be chaired by two Vice-Provosts -- Professor David Naylor, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Vice-Provost, Relations with Health Care Institutions, and Professor Vivek Goel, Vice-Provost, Faculty. This task force includes clinical faculty, tenured faculty from the University, and representation from the hospitals. The task force intends to consult closely with relevant stakeholders, including, as necessary, a broad-based 'clinical constituent assembly' brought together to represent the interests of clinical faculty.

Terms of Reference:

In carrying out its mandate, the Task Force will:

  1. Develop a draft set of policies to govern appointments of clinical faculty.
  2. Obtain the views of clinical faculty as to how their relationship with the University should be governed.
  3. Develop principles to guide the harmonization of practice plan and hospital appeal and grievance processes for clinical faculty, including provision as appropriate for the protection of academic freedom.
  4. Make recommendations regarding revisions to the affiliation agreements to support the implementation of any agreed principles and policies.
  5. Consider other matters relevant to the relationship between clinical faculty and the University.

Membership:

  • Vivek Goel, Vice-Provost, Faculty; Professor, Department of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, Faculty of Medicine (Co-Chair)
  • David Naylor, Vice-Provost, Relations with Health Care Institutions; Dean, Faculty of Medicine (Co-Chair)
  • Brenda Andrews, Professor and Chair, Department of Medical Genetics and Microbiology, Faculty of Medicine
  • Philip Berger, Chief, Department of Family & Community Medicine, St Michael's Hospital; Professor, Department of Family & Community Medicine, Faculty of Medicine
  • Catherine Birt, Department of Ophthalmology, Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre; Professor, Department of Ophthalmology and Vision Science, Faculty of Medicine
  • Jack Carr, Professor, Department of Economics, Faculty of Arts and Science; Chair, Academic Board
  • Allan Detsky, Physician-in-Chief, Mount Sinai Hospital; Professor, Department of Medicine and Department of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, Faculty of Medicine
  • Bernard Dickens, Professor, Faculty of Law and Faculty of Medicine
  • Patricia Houston, Anaesthetist-in-Chief, St Michael's Hospital; Professor, Department of Anaesthesia, Faculty of Medicine
  • Jeffrey Lozon, President and CEO, St Michael's Hospital; Professor, Department of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, Faculty of Medicine
  • Robert Magissano, Head, Division of Vascular Surgery, Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre; Professor, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine
  • Peter Singer, Staff Physician, University Health Network; Sun Life Financial Chair in Bioethics and Director of the Joint Centre for Bioethics; Professor, Department of Medicine, Faculty of Medicine
  • John Wedge, Surgeon-in-Chief, Hospital for Sick Children; R.S. McLaughlin Professor and Chair, Department of Surgery, Faculty of Medicine
  • Carol Robb (Secretary), Assistant Vice-Provost, Health Sciences

Submissions:

Submissions related to the terms of reference of the Task Force are sought from all interested members of the University community and should be sent to the attention of Carol Robb, Office of the Vice-President and Provost, Room 221, Simcoe Hall, telephone 416-978-6662, email carol.robb@utoronto.ca, by January 31, 2002.