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Press Release

Statement - Minister of Health Announcement on Funding of Family Medicine Residents

Canada NewsWire

OTTAWA, Feb. 23 /CNW/ - Today's announcement by the Minister of Health is a step in the right direction. Canada's physicians have long advocated for more doctors for the five million Canadians who do not have a family physician. More recently, the CMA has urged the federal government to fully honour its 2008 commitment to fund residency positions, the repatriation of Canadian physicians abroad, and pilot projects to recruit and retain nurses.

While more needs to be done, we are encouraged that this announcement will create 100 new residencies in Canada's rural regions, where access to physicians is a constant challenge.

As stated in the CMA's policy document, Health Care Transformation - Change that Works. Care that Lasts, the CMA recommends four mechanisms to address the shortage of health human resources in the Canadian health care system. They are:

  • Increase medical school and residency positions to replenish and increase our physician supply for the future;
  • Invest in recruitment and retention strategies for physicians, nurses and other health care workers;
  • Ease the process of integration into our health care workforce for international medical graduates and Canadian physicians returning from abroad; and
  • Introduce new providers, such as physician assistants, to the health care workforce.

Dr. Jeff Turnbull

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