6 for 6 is a family medicine, faculty development program in which six doctors from different rural and remote regions of Newfoundland and Labrador, New Brunswick, and Nunavut will be accepted annually into a 15-month research skills certificate program.

This learner-centered program utilizes a blended learning model involving eLearning (web-based and mobile learning with podcast and facilitated small group problem solving sessions) and face-to-face learning. It will be built on sound educational curriculum development principles and entail synchronous and asynchronous learning models. For the face-to-face learning, participants will attend structured sessions at Memorial’s main campus on six separate occasions.

The name of the program reflects that six participants will be chosen annually to complete the program and that six face-to-face learning sessions take place at the main academic centre.

The main academic centre is Memorial University’s Faculty of Medicine.

The goal is to support rural and remote family medicine faculty in pursuing research relevant to their practices and their communities. These skills, in turn, will enable participants to help create a research initiative in their respective regions by supporting others in working towards their research goals.

Rural and remote physicians often face greater challenges compared to their urban counterparts given the often extended workload, hours, and resident teaching time in underserved communities and the relative lack of a community of practice that supports scholarly research interests. 6 for 6 aims to address these issues.

This program is designed to be flexible and self-paced, highly accessible, and characterized by peer and mentorship support systems.

The need for a rural and remote research capacity building strategy and development program tailored to the needs of rural and remote faculty was identified following a thorough evaluation of current programs and extensive research involving a literature search, environmental scan, key informants interviews, and a focus group.

Yes, the processes and outcomes of the 6 for 6 program will be evaluated. Participants are expected to complete pre-, mid-, and post-program evaluation surveys. These surveys are designed to evaluate the usefulness of program content and the effectiveness of program design and delivery. Moreover, these surveys aim to assess participants’ attitude toward scholarly research and are designed to capture changes in research knowledge and skill perceived over the course of the program. Pre- and post-evaluation surveys will also be administered prior to and following each of the 6 faculty development sessions. The purpose of these surveys is to gain specific feedback from participants regarding their overall impressions of session content and delivery, to gather information concerning the attainment of session objectives, and to provide participants with an opportunity to discuss what they learned and potential areas for improvement.

Given the right circumstances, this program could assist with recruitment and retention of doctors to rural and remote areas of the province who are interested in rural health research. In a longitudinal capacity, the 6 for 6 program aims to help build and sustain research regional networks within rural and remote areas of the province. It is anticipated that by developing research regional networks in rural and remote communities, the program will help keep family doctors connected to the main academic centre and will help foster communities of practice related to scholarly research. The 6 for 6 program may help recruitment/retention of physicians to rural locations by helping faculty gain autonomy over conducting their own research and by promoting the development of community- and province-wide research support systems.

The program is scheduled to begin April 24, 2014.

WHAT ARE THE DATES FOR THE SIX FACE-TO-FACE SESSIONS TO BE HELD IN ST. JOHN’S?
The dates of the six face-to-face research skills sessions are as follows:

  • Session 1: Thursday, April 24th – Saturday April 26th, 2014
  • Session 2: Thursday, June 12th – Saturday, June 14th, 2014
  • Session 3: Thursday, September 25th – Saturday, September 27th, 2014
  • Session 4: Thursday, November 27th – Saturday, November 29th, 2014
  • Session 5: Thursday, February 19th – Saturday, February 21st, 2015
  • Session 6: Thursday, April 16th – Saturday, April 18th, 2015

WHERE CAN I FIND A COPY OF THE APPLICATION TO APPLY FOR 6 FOR 6?
The application is available online at: www.med.mun.ca/familymed/teachers/Six-for-Six.aspx

WHO CAN APPLY FOR 6 FOR 6?

To be eligible to apply for this program, you must:

  • Be a rural or remote family medicine physician, non-GFT
  • Reside outside the Avalon peninsula of Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Have CFPC membership and at least one year in practice
  • Have no certification in advanced research skills
  • Be able to commit the time to participate in the program

The program participants are selected based on their geographical location, research experience and level of interest, and leadership skills.

Participants in the program will not be required to travel outside Newfoundland and Labrador.

Participants will have the cost of their travel reimbursed based on the most cost efficient form of travel. If a participant uses their own vehicle for travel, they will be reimbursed on a per km basis.

Airfare
If traveling by air, participants are permitted to claim the cost of one return flight with Provincial Airlines (alpha class) for each time they travel to St. John’s for their face-to-face sessions. A receipt for air travel must be submitted along with boarding passes (paper copy, preferred) for each flight.

Note: Please remember that boarding passes must be saved/scanned and printed prior to your date of travel. If you have received an electronic version of your boarding pass using a mobile device, please be sure to take a photo or screenshot of your boarding pass prior to your date of travel. Once you have arrived in St. John’s, your boarding will have expired and will not be available for consideration as claimable costs.

Private Vehicle
If traveling by private vehicle, mileage from departure (rural) location to the hotel in St. John’s can be claimed at a rate of 37.07¢ per kilometer. Taxi fare to and from the airport can also be claimed, if required. As per University regulations, a maximum of $40 each way can be claimed with the submission of receipts.

Hotel
Per face-to-face session, participants are also permitted to claim the cost of one adult room (queen size bed) for two nights at the Capital Hotel. An invoice from the hotel must be submitted and claimable food and beverage charges must be included in the meal per diem rate.

Meals
Participants will also be reimbursed the cost of meals during the face-to-face sessions. Meal reimbursement will be based on a per diem rate of $10 for breakfast, $15 for lunch, and $25 for dinner, as per University regulations. Meals will be provided to participants during the day while attending face-to-face sessions. While the cost of dinner can be claimed for Friday and Saturday evenings, any incurred meal costs resulting from delays in travel cannot be claimed.

A travel claim package will be provided to all participants at the end of each face-to-face session. This package will outline claimable and non-claimable expenses and will include a travel claim form to return to Shari Fitzgerald within 10 days of travel. If this form is not received in a timely fashion, there is no guarantee that incurred costs will be reimbursed.

Thomas Heeley, 6 for 6 program research assistant, will be the main guide and campus connection for the participants. She has been hired to specifically support 6 for 6 program participants with their research endeavors, act as their main liaison and campus contact, and program evaluation for 6 for 6.

For now, the program has received funding from the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine for a three-year period.

Access to a computer and the Internet will be required for the eLearning component of the program. In the case that participants require wireless access while attending their face-to-face sessions in St. John’s, set-up can be arranged on the first Friday of Session 1. For this purpose, each participant must ensure that they have their employee number and http://my.mun.ca account access information when attending their first face-to-face session.

Yes. This is a certificate program and all participants who successfully complete the program will receive a Certificate of Achievement in Rural Research and Scholarship.