Section Head Reviews

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Policy: Section Head Reviews
Policy Nr: Sec 02 - 06
Target Review Date: 2019-03-15
Main Stakeholder: Department Head


To ensure achievement and maintenance of academic, clinical, professional and leadership excellence through a transparent and fair process.


see Section Head Review Committee


The committee shall review the previous years’ activities of the Section Head in relation to the following criteria:

  • Education (undergraduate, graduate and continuing)
  • Research – in evaluating research information pertaining to peer review grants, publications, participation in review panels
  • Professional Excellence – profile of the Section within the Department
  • Overall Clinical Effectiveness

The committee shall:

  • evaluate the leadership and organizational qualities of the Section Head as related to the function of the Section
  • assess the contribution of the Section Head in relation to the wider activities of the Department
  • identify, where relevant, how the Section may have been prevented from achieving its goals
  • examine the goals and objectives of the Section for the next five (5) years.

Review Committee Recommendations

The committee shall report its recommendations to the Department Head and may recommend the following options:

  1. renew for an additional two to five (2-5)year period with specific recommendations
  2. no renewal

Where possible, a Section Head’s review should be completed within three (3) months of the anniversary of their appointment, or last year review.

Committee Procedures

  1. The Chair will not have a vote.
  2. The Chair may disband the Committee if it is unable to reach a satisfactory conclusion, or if confidentiality is breached.
  3. The Department Head will ensure that a consistent set of procedures is followed by the Committee.

Formats of Reviews

The Department Head will establish a timetable of upcoming reviews one year in advance and remind each Section Head at least six (6) months in advance of the date.

A section report will be prepared by the Section Head.

The report should include an assessment of the Section’s progress in achieving previously stated objectives and a summary of section research, teaching and professional activities. This report will be sent to the committee members at least two (2) weeks prior to their meeting.

If external reviews have been requested, the section report will be sent to the external reviewer(s)at least two (2) weeks prior to their arrival.

Opportunities will be made available for the committee to receive presentations from members of the Section under review and other section heads or department members that may wish to come before the committee. Information may be sought from the Postgraduate Medical Education Committee and Undergraduate Medical Education Committee chairs, and any other people deemed appropriate by the committee Chair. The committee will discuss the submitted reports from the Section Head and when appropriate, the External Reviewers report, prior to proceeding with the interviews.

The committee will meet with the Section Head after which a final discussion will take place. The Section Head should be prepared to give a twenty (20) minute presentation outlining briefly past and present issues relevant to the review. The incumbent should also be prepared to indicate the future priorities and opportunities that should be pursued. A round table question period should follow.

While we cannot expect 100% attendance at all meetings, efforts should be made by committee members to be on time and attend the entire meeting.

The decision of the review will be by consensus. If the chairman of the committee is someone other than the Department Head, he/she will report to the Department Head the same day following each meeting to go over the findings and recommendations of the committee.

The report of the committee will be completed within two weeks of its final meeting and copies of this report will be sent to the Department Head, who will subsequently notify University and Hospital authorities with respect to the outcome of the review.

External Review

The process of external review will be the responsibility of the Department Head, who will arrange an appropriate date, set up schedules and ensure a wide cross-section of interviewees within and outside the section, after consultation with the Senior Advisory Committee, and the Section Head.

There could be a maximum of two reviewers selected for a section review.

The external reviewers should follow a standard format, and address general considerations, for example:

  • sectional relationships
  • dedication to department and hospital mission
  • internal and external perception of function should be assessed
  • comments on recruitment plans and success are relevant
  • leadership, considerations such as overall style, effective delegation, management of clinical services and communication within the section should be assessed
  • commitments to education and research, development of academic thrusts, overall clinical reputation, and areas of special expertise should be noted

Topics for External Reviewer

  • Education
    • Undergraduate
    • Postgraduate
    • Continuing Medical Education
  • Research
    • Including health care research, peer reviewed grants, industrial support, publications and any other relevant scientific contributions
  • Clinical Functions
    • Effectiveness of clinical responsibilities, including acute care, diagnostic laboratories, ambulatory care and consultation services
  • Impact
    • Impact of section and department and hospital – internal and external perception of the academic and clinical effectiveness of the section should be determined
  • Leadership
    • Overall style, capacity to delegate, management of clinical services and ability to communicate within the Section should be noted
  • Special and Unique Areas Of Contribution
    • summary should identify areas of strengths and weaknesses and recommendations should be listed
    • the reviewer should also give an opinion of how well the Section Head has achieved his goals and objectives for this section
    • the external reviewer’s report shall be made available to the committee for their deliberations

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