This article by an Albertan emergency room physician is a thorough and excellent explanation of doctors’ concerns about the health cuts:
A facebook live video from our colleagues in Sundre, who nicely summarize the health care cuts, and the devastating changes they will have to make in order to keep practicing.
The major diagnostic imaging groups in Calgary and Edmonton have been given one year’s notice that their contracts will be cancelled in one year and then they may reapply, or the contracts may given to other companies. The radiologists already had significant cuts in November, even before the current round of proposed cuts.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we cannot in good conscience promote a large gathering of people for our townhall. We still want to share our concerns with you and answer you questions, so instead we will be live-streaming the event to facebook. Please search “Bow Valley Doctor’s Town Hall Meeting” on facebook for the event. You can post your questions here, on the event facebook page, or during the live-streaming event. Thank you all for your understanding of the this last minute change.
March 3, 2020
To our valued patients and their families,
As your family doctors, we treasure the relationship that we have built with our patients over the years, but in light of Health Minister Shandro’s unprecedented cuts to family medicine, we are being forced to make some tough choices in order to keep serving you.
Due to Minster Shandro’s proposed cuts, as of April 1, we will have to change how we deliver our medical services to you. These changes will likely include:
- routine visits will be booked for 10 minutes, therefore we may need additional appointment to address all of your concerns
- prescription refills will not be issued via phone or fax
- appointments will be needed in order to review results
- seniors will now be charged for driver’s medicals as this is no longer covered
- enforcing uninsured services such as sick notes, forms, letters for insurance, etc.
The Alberta Medical Association (AMA) and the medical profession understand the hard economic realities in Alberta, and we have worked hard to provide solutions that do not compromise medical care. At the time that these cuts were announced, the AMA had found solutions to cover 75% of the savings the government required, and had another proposal on the way. In addition, the AMA proposed to go to arbitration to find a solution that was acceptable to both sides.
Despite this, the government is moving forward with their proposed cuts, without consultation or negotiation with the medical profession. These cuts focus on family medicine, rural medicine and the ability to spend more time with patients.
We ask for your support in calling on your elected officials to return to the negotiating table with the AMA. Let them know that their attack on family doctors and the medical home is not acceptable.
Please feel free to contact your MLA, Miranda Rosin (Phone: (403) 609-4509 Email: Banff.Kananaskis@assembly.ab.ca) and our Health Minister, Tyler Shandro (Phone: (780) 427-3665 Email: Calgary.Acadia@assembly.ab.ca)
For more information, please see our website: bowvalleydoctors.wordpress.com
Your Bow Valley Family Physicians
CBC radio interviews a researcher who is researching how the way physicians are paid affects patients:
This video is a simple and excellent explanation of why the new health cuts mean shorter appointment times (and less patient centred care):
In November 2019 the government announced its intentions to cut costs to health care. Despite doctors’ efforts to accept a pay cut across the board, the government of Alberta unilaterally decided to cancel our contract and dramatically reducing compensation to doctors fees for extra time spent with patients.
As family physicians in the Bow Valley, we are concerned about the impact these cuts are going to have on the health care of Albertans, as well as the significant misinformation being spread by the UCP government. The purpose of this blog is to allow us to share resources that can explain what is happening and what it will mean.