All six members of the Yukon Medical Council, the territory’s licensing board for doctors, have resigned in criticism of the territorial government.
The board said it didn’t have enough money or staff to do the work it is expected to carry out.
"Once you’re licensed in a given jurisdiction, you cannot be denied a licence in another jurisdiction, so we have to make sure that every Yukon physician and every new physician into the Yukon territory meets the same standards as British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Newfoundland, etc," said Dr. Bruce Beaton, chair of the Yukon Medical Council.
Dr. Rao Tadepalli, president of the Yukon Medical Association — which represents doctors, said the Yukon Medical Council wanted a feasibility study done on establishing a Yukon College of Physicians and Surgeons but the request for a study was not acted upon.
Tadepalli characterizes the government’s response as dismissive.
He said the government asked for candidates for a new council without addressing the concerns of those who resigned.
"Right now I have a response from the government saying, 'Well, the six have stepped down, give me six more names,' and that's definitely not the way to go ahead," Tadepalli said.
"Obviously there was a problem, and four astute physicians have stepped down, two lay members of the public have stepped down. It’s been a unanimous resignation. That is a message to the government. You just don't say ‘Those six are gone. The next six now. If not, we will do it our way.’ That's kind of threatening. I would not go with that."
Yukon Community Services Minister Elaine Taylor said there will be an emergency meeting on Thursday with the Yukon Medical Council to discuss the issue.