Canadian Medical Association

Having a voice at the Cabinet table key to addressing Canada's aging population

Ottawa, ON – July 18, 2018 – The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) is thrilled to see one of its key recommendations – the appointment of a new federal minister of seniors – come to fruition today. For almost five years, the CMA has been actively working to highlight the growing urgency in addressing seniors care. From the social determinants to the delivery of health care across the country, it's clear that our aging population is having a significant impact.

"Having a voice at the Cabinet table is key to addressing seniors' needs," says Dr. Laurent Marcoux, president of the CMA. "On behalf of Canada's doctors and the more than 65,000 Demand a Plan supporters, we welcome Minister Filomena Tassi to her new role."

In December 2013, the CMA started an initiative to address issues arising from Canada's aging population. On the eve of the 2015 federal election, the CMA launched Demand a Plan, a grassroots campaign that brings together Canadians − including patients, physicians and caretakers − to advocate for a national seniors strategy. Today, the campaign represents more than 65,000 individuals from coast-to-coast-to-coast, who have sent more than 180,000 letters to Members of Parliament to advocate for specific recommendations, including the creation of a federal minister responsible for seniors.

In October 2017, the CMA made 15 recommendations to the House of Commons' Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities. Their report, Advancing Inclusion and Quality of Life for Canadian Seniors, was released in March and delivers a comprehensive roadmap for the federal government to take action in improving our approach to seniors care.

"Today, the government has taken a positive step towards improving the lives of seniors, their families and Canadians," adds Dr. Marcoux. "We look forward to working with Minister Tassi to ensure that programs and services are developed to address the needs of our aging population."

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