As Canadians continue to struggle to access health care in a timely fashion, organizations representing physicians, nurses and hospitals across the country are calling on all premiers to ensure health system reform is on the agenda at their meetings next month in Winnipeg, Man.
We have seen positive movement recently. The federal government has increased funding for health care. Many provinces have agreed in principle to work with their federal counterparts, developing action plans to improve access to health care while remaining accountable to Canadians.
Consistent, focused action from the federal, provincial and territorial governments is the only way to tackle the many ongoing crises still facing our health systems:
- It is estimated that 4.7 to 6 million Canadians do not have a primary care provider.
- Emergency departments across Canada continue to struggle due to overwhelming demand and a shortage of health care professionals.
- Wait times for surgeries and diagnostic tests are far too long.
- Health care providers who have worked to provide timely care through the pandemic remain on the job, but they are burned out and continue to struggle because of a shortage of resources and immense workloads, including unnecessary administrative tasks that take away from patient care responsibilities.
Governments must continue to collaborate with each other and with providers, patients and other stakeholders to stabilize and reform our health systems.
Although many key topics will certainly be addressed when the premiers meet in Winnipeg on July 10-12, we urge them to ensure health care remains a top priority on their agenda. This is an opportunity for governments to demonstrate to Canadians that they can work together to make meaningful and transformative changes to the way health care is delivered across the country. The need for change has never been greater.
This call to action is co-signed by the following organizations:
- Alberta Medical Association
- Canadian Federation of Nurses Unions
- Canadian Nurses Association
- Doctors of BC
- Doctors Manitoba
- Fédération des médecins omnipraticiens du Québec
- Fédération des médecins spécialistes du Québec
- Medical Society of Prince Edward Island
- New Brunswick Medical Society
- Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association
- Northwest Territories Medical Association
- Ontario Medical Association
- Saskatchewan Medical Association
- Yukon Medical Association