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Behavioural Medicine Program


The Behavioural Medicine Program includes three different streams:

  • Family Practice Residency Program
  • International Medical Graduate Program
  • Specialty Resident Program

The purpose of the program is to teach specific, focused skills that strengthen the doctor/patient relationship and are required for optimal medical practice. With instruction from an interdisciplinary team from Counselling Psychology and Family Medicine, these sessions enhance existing skills and model new strategies. Residents practise the skills during the session so that they can quickly apply them in clinical practice. The program is based on a variety of counselling and therapeutic models and seeks to build on the resident’s individual experiences and personal qualities.

The program includes the following topics:

  • Active Listening and Basic Empathy (verbal and non-verbal skills)
  • Micro Communication Skills
  • Discussing Code Status
  • Giving Life-Altering News
  • Managing the Difficult Doctor - Patient Interaction and Difficult Colleague Interaction:
      • Session 1: developing awareness of impending difficulty
      • Session 2: a template for managing a difficult interaction
  • Expressed Empathy in the history and physical exam
  • Basic individual and group counselling skills
  • Suicide Assessment
  • Professional Resilience
  • Effective Closure of the Doctor - Patient Relationship - planning for the future
  • Future topics include: Cross-cultural Communication (to be developed with the UBC Division of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health), the Family Conference, Basic Group Skills

For more information please contact Dr. Douglas Cave at: dcave@providencehealth.bc.ca