Date:  June 9, 2013
Title: Great White North (CanFOAMed)

Last week I attended the Canadian Association of Emergency Physicians (CAEP) meeting in Vancouver. It was a wonderful trip for a number of reasons. The first and most important reason was my 13 year daughter Sage accompanied me on the trip. It was so much fun to spend one-on-one father/daughter time with her. We visited family, biked around Stanley Park and spend the afternoon at the aquarium. Sage also made a great “plus-one” for the conference.

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While at the CAEP conference we did THREE CanFOAMed initiatives:

1) BoB (Best of BEEM) Talk

Dr. Anthony Crocco, Peds EM guru, and part of the BEEM Dream Team and I gave a BoB (Best of BEEM) Talk.  We presented the top five adult and pediatric papers of the last year. The audience was amazing and enthusiastically participated in the talk. It was standing room only, spilled out into the hallway and people were dancing in their seats. We used social media (music, memes and videos) to teach core EBM concepts. It ended with the world premiere of the LMFAO video called “I’m and Emerg Doc and I Know It”.  This video celebrates being and emergency physician and was a unique way to recruit doctors to the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance. The video has gone fungal with about 4,000 views in one week. We hope it goes bacterial (more than 10,000 views) but shooting for viral may be unrealistic.

2) Great White North Vodcast:

IMG_1035A vodcast was also created at CAEP and posted on YouTube with the help of Brent Thoma. Brent was the winner of the prestigious CAEP Resident of the Year Award – well deserved. We interviewed four leaders in the CanFOAMed movement. This was done in the style of Bob and Doug McKenzie’s show on Second City TV (SCTV) called The Great White North. This SCTV show celebrated unique aspects of the Canadian experience.

Screen Shot 2013-06-09 at 2.02.08 PM“Bob and Doug play on the stereotypical Canadian image: the hoser. The segment was created after a request from the executives at the CBC (which aired SCTV) to include two minutes of broadcast that included specific, identifiable Canadian content. Thus Bob (Rick Moranis) and Doug (Dave Thomas) were born. They were a satirical projected image of the typical beer drinking, plaid and toque wearing, great white North residing Canadian citizen. Bob and Doug’s image of the Hoser is (for the most part) divorced from the reality of what a Canadian actually looks like, values, and how the act and speak. For any Canadian, the image of the Hoser is so clearly satirical and a joke, yet the stereotypes embodied by these characters still play a roll in the creation of the Canadian identity.”

We hope you enjoy watching our version of the Great White North and our attempt at CanFOAMed humour.

Here are the four individuals we interviewed on the Great White North parody show. Each was asked to discuss their FOAMed initiative while suggesting another FOAMed resource they found useful.

SocmobLogo-Final-May-17Chris Bond: SOCMOB (@SOCMOBEM)

The SOCMOB is a blog for all types of medical trainees, including nurses, EMS providers, RTs, med students, residents and staff/consultants. The goal is to address common medical myths/pseudoaxioms, as well as provide free open access medical education (FOAM) on a variety of ED/critical care topics.

Chris is an emergency medicine resident in Canada, and has a passion for medical education, teaching, EBM and FOAM. He made a very popular YouTube video explaining Wenckebach to the Justin Timberlake song Sexy Back.

Suggested FOAMed resource by Chris is EMCrit by Scott Weingart.

Screen Shot 2013-06-09 at 11.26.54 AMElisha T: The Chart Review (@ETTube)

The Chart Review is a case based blog looking at cases Elisha has seen in the emergency department.

Elisha T is a community emergency physician in Canada. Interests include teaching and social media in medical education. Supporter of the #FOAM and #FOAMed (free open/online access medical education) movement.

Suggested FOAMed site ERCast by Rob Orman

Screen Shot 2013-06-03 at 3.02.59 PMEve Purdy: Manu et Corde (@Purdy_Eve)

Manu et Corde blog was created to document life in medical school and Eve’s road to becoming a physician. It is a mix of personal reflections, FOAM designed as reference for other medical students/health professionals and commentary on medical education.

Eve is a Canadian medical student. Her recommended FOAMed site is The Short Coats in EM by Lauren Westafer.

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Stella Yiu: Flipped EM Classroom (@Stella_Yiu)

The flipped classroom model is based on reversing the traditional approach to teaching. Stella does this project with Dr. Rahul Patwari from Chicago. The flipped model, as the name suggests, reverses this situation. Students review lecture material at home while they are alone. This passive activity is best done in isolation anyway. Homework is then completed in the classroom where students have the benefit of asking one another questions or drawing upon the knowledge of the instructor. The goal is to create a series of lectures based on the flipped classroom model using the curriculum created by the Clerkship Directors in Emergency Medicine.

Stella Yiu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the University of Ottawa. She is the Undergraduate Clerkship Associate Director. Stella is also one of the organizers of the CAEP 2014 meeting to be help in Ottawa. We hope she will build on the success of social media initiatives at CAEP 2013. Her suggested FOAMed site is Academic Life in Emergency Medicine by Michelle Lin.

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Brent Thoma: BoringEM (@BoringEM)

The BoringEM blog was inspired by the realization that that the majority of Free Open-Access Meducation (FOAM) is about sexy stuff. Ultrasound and critical care are awesome, but the boring (but common and important) aspects of emergency medicine also need some love. This site attempts to fill that niche by publishing on EM topics of intense disinterest.

Brent is a Canadian ER resident that loves emergency medicine, simulation, education, mentorship, leadership, quality improvement, writing, parliamentary procedure, Star Wars, Dodgeball, his dog and a few people.

Brent recommends using GoogleFOAM to search out FOAMed resources on the internet.

Ken Milne: TheSGEM (@TheSGEM)


TheSGEM wants you to be able to give the BEST possible care to the patients you serve. It does this using social media to turn Med Ed on its head. Its goal is to shorten the knowledge translation window from about ten years down to one year. The high-quality, clinically relevant content comes from the Best Evidence in Emergency Medicine (BEEM) faculty who critically appraise the literature. Listen to TheSGEM and turn your car into a classroom.

I am a front line emergency room physician practicing for 16 years in small rural community. Married with three wonderful children and a dog. Been doing medical research for 30 years. Passionate about teaching. Struggling to stay physically fit by doing endurance sports.

VIEW Vodcast on YouTube of TheSGEM Episode#40: Great White North

3) RANThony:

IMG_0952Continuing along with the Canadian content and the focus on CanFOAMed we created our 1st RANThony. Dr. Anthony Crocco  has been know for his teaching rants on various paediatric emergency medicine topics. We decided that doing a video similar to the rants done by Rick Mercer a famous Canadian political satirist would be a great idea. Check out Rick’s Rant on the Flu Shot to understand what we were trying to achieve.

CAEP offered the perfect opportunity to record a RANThony. So during lunch one day we walked through the vender display hall and Anthony gave his Fever Fear Rant.  Please send us your feedback and let us know if you would like to see more RANThonies in the future.

KEENER KONTESTLast week’s winner was Dave Lemonick from Pittsburgh. The question was about the origins of Memorial Day in the USA. Dave answered correctly that Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan. He was a national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, and it was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. Dave you will be receiving a cool skeptical prize.

Be sure to listen to this weeks podcast for another chance to win. Email your answer to  TheSGEM@gmail.com. Use “Keener Kontest” in the subject line. First one to email me the correct answer wins.

Remember to be skeptical of anything you learn, even if you heard it on The Skeptics Guide to Emergency Medicine.  Talk with you next week.