Feb. 9, 2024–Ontario’s doctors, represented by the Ontario Medical Association, welcome the agreement between the provincial and federal governments on health-care funding, but say more resources are needed to address the significant structural challenges within our health-care system.
“Ontario’s doctors welcome this funding that will help address the most urgent issues,” said Dr. Park. “While we tackle the most urgent issues, we also need to ensure we have a long-term, stable funding formula to fix the underlying issues in the system and build for the future, knowing we have an aging and more medically complex patient population.”
Ontario’s doctors supported Premier Doug Ford’s previous call for the federal government to increase the Canada Health Transfer from 22 per cent to 35 per cent of provincial–territorial health-care spending. This agreement doesn’t reach that number.
The OMA has outlined what needs to be done to improve our health-care system in the Prescription for Ontario: Doctors’ Solutions for Immediate Action. Urgent priorities include fixing the crisis in primary care, addressing the growing burden of unnecessary administration and increasing community capacity to tackle hospital overcrowding.
Far too many Ontarians, a staggering 2.3 million people, are already without a family doctor and that number is expected to nearly double in only two years.
“Everyone in Ontario deserves to have access to a family doctor,” said OMA CEO Kimberly Moran. “We’re pleased to see the federal and provincial government commit to funding new primary care teams as it’s an important step towards that goal.”
The OMA also welcomes the new funding to modernize the collection of medical data, which should help reduce paperwork. The average family physician spends almost 40 per cent of their work week on administrative tasks that take them away from patients.
“Collaboration is key to improving Ontario’s health-care system so we will continue to consult members, health-care system partners and the public about our most urgent priorities and work with the government and others to ensure our vision for co-ordinated care across people’s lives becomes a reality,” said Dr. Park.
The Ontario Medical Association represents Ontario’s 43,000-plus physicians, medical students and retired physicians, advocating for and supporting doctors while strengthening the leadership role of doctors in caring for patients. Our vision is to be the trusted voice in transforming Ontario’s health-care system.
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