PLDP Action Learning Projects

PLDP Action Learning Projects

Action learning projects are a key part of Doctors Nova Scotia’s Physician Leadership Development Program (PLDP).

Project details

Working with their colleagues and health-system stakeholders, the 2018–19 PLDP class researched provided recommendations on four challenges specific to Nova Scotia: physician burnout, physician engagement, community engagement and collaborative practice. The physicians then presented their findings to health-system partners.

Physician burnout

Challenge: Identify, recommend and advocate for actionable strategies to address burnout in physicians in Nova Scotia.

Recommendations for Doctors Nova Scotia:

  1. Implement a province-wide EMR.
  2. Address outdated payment structure to ensure adequate compensation for indirect patient care activities.
  3. Implement a system to ensure reliable access to locum coverage.
  4. Engage front-line physicians in decision-making processes.
  5. Commit to follow-up on impact of these mitigation strategies.
  6. Provide training and support for physicians to promote healthy work environments.

Group members:

  • Dr. Sabina Abidi
  • Dr. Christine Dipchand
  • Dr. Andrew Lynk
  • Dr. Tanya Munroe
  • Dr. Amy Ornstein
  • Dr. Tobias Witter

See the physician burnout poster; view the physician burnout PowerPoint presentation

Physician engagement

Challenge: Identify barriers and propose innovative, evidence-based solutions to improve connection and engagement of NSHA decision-makers with physicians.
Recommendations for the Nova Scotia Health Authority:

  1. Make physician engagement a priority.
  2. Clarify and simplify NSHA structure to facilitate communication.
  3. Partner with front-line physicians early in health system change.
  4. Timely responsiveness to issues raised by physicians.
  5. Develop a culture to allow physicians to deliver quality health care.

Group members:

  • Dr. Natasha Deshwal
  • Dr. Cindy Forbes
  • Dr. Robert Green
  • Dr. Heather Johnson
  • Dr. Penelope Poyah
  • Dr. Sandra Wajstaub

See the physician engagement poster

Community engagement

Challenge: Review the three frameworks of community engagement currently being used and recommend most effective model for Nova Scotia.
Recommendation for Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine:
Use an aggregate of the Holland Matrix, IAP2 and STEPS.
Group members:

  • Dr. Alexa Bagnell
  • Dr. Nicolas Braithwaite
  • Dr. Robyn MacQuarrie
  • Dr. Dolores McKeen
  • Dr. Tim Wallace
  • Dr. Celina White

See the community engagement poster

Collaborative practice

Challenge: Examine physician collaborative initiatives and develop guidelines on how best to foster collaboration.
Recommendations for the IWK and Doctors Nova Scotia:
The following fundamental collaborative care pillars were identified as foundational principles:

  1. Trust
  2. Leadership and communication
  3. Patient-centred
  4. Accountability and responsibility
  5. Education, evaluation and adaptability
  6. Resource and funding

Group members:

  • Dr. Roop Conyers
  • Dr. Michelle Dow
  • Dr. Aaron Smith
  • Dr. Michael Wadden
  • Dr. Jennifer Jones
  • Dr. Joanna Zed

See the collaborative practice poster

Subject matter experts

As subject matter experts on these important health-care issues, the physicians will make themselves available to speak with colleagues and health-care organizations. Each team has agreed to check in with their partner organizations to assess and support implementation of the recommendations.


Barb Johnson
Senior communications advisor
1-800-563-3427 ext. 4915