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New Brunswick doctors, Canadian Medical Association launch conversation with Choosing Wisely Canada

New Brunswick’s doctors, together with the Canadian Medical Association and physicians across the country, are starting a conversation for better medicine.

Based on the successful campaign in the United States, Choosing Wisely Canada encourages a dialogue between patients and doctors about the overuse of medical tests and treatments. It empowers patients to make informed choices, in consultation with their physicians, to get the best care while limiting exposure to unnecessary tests and procedures.

“New Brunswick’s physicians have always been committed to giving our patients the very best care, and sometimes a more conservative approach is best,” said Dr. Lynn Hansen, President of the New Brunswick Medical Society. “We’re looking to start a conversation – more is not always better.”

Lists of “Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question,” prepared by medical specialist societies, form the backbone of the initiative. To date, nine Canadian specialist societies have completed lists of tests, treatments, and procedures for which there is strong evidence that their use may be unnecessary, does not add value for patients, or may even cause harm. Other lists from other societies are in development. These lists have been used to create a series of plain-language patient pamphlets.

“This initiative is a great tool not only to encourage patients to have informed conversations with their doctor, but also to help doctors guide their patients towards the right care,” said Dr. Mary Jarratt, President of the New Brunswick Medical Society’s General Practice Section.

Choosing Wisely Canada is a physician-led effort to deliver the best, evidence-based care to patients. It fosters a culture change towards responsible stewardship of health care resources.

“We’re pleased to be leading this work nationwide - it’s best for our patients, and it’s best for our health care system,” said Dr. Liam Hickey, President of the Specialty Section of the New Brunswick Medical Society. "Unnecessary investigations and treatments are not only costly, they are also potentially harmful."

Media contact:

Aleisha Bosch
Communications Officer
New Brunswick Medical Society
(506)458-8860 ext. 633
abosch@nbms.nb.ca

Founded in 1867, the New Brunswick Medical Society (NBMS) is the professional association representing all physicians in New Brunswick. It is a provincial division of the Canadian Medical Association. Its twin goals are to represent and serve physicians, and advocate for the health of New Brunswickers. Over a hundred New Brunswick doctors sit on our Board and Committees, representing the 1600 doctors in the province.