CFPC urges federal government leadership in health care following end of Health Accord

April 2014

(Mississauga, ON, April 1, 2014) The College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) is troubled but not surprised by the Government of Canada’s decision not to renew the Health Accord, also known as a "10-year plan to strengthen health care".

The Health Accord was signed in 2004 by the federal government and Canada’s Premiers. It recognized that "improving access to care and reducing wait times will require cooperation among governments". The Health Accord focused on improving access to care, having enough health care professionals to meet Canadians’ needs, and enhancing home care. It also addressed advancements in primary care including accelerating the adoption of electronic medical records, developing a national pharmaceuticals strategy, committing to a pan-Canadian public health strategy that underscores advancing the health status of Canadians, expanding federal investments in health innovation, and reporting health system performance to Canadians.

"The federal government’s decision not to renew the Health Accord furthers its absence of leadership at the health care table," says CFPC President, Dr. Kathy Lawrence. "That leadership is critical. Some good progress has been made towards achieving the Health Accord goals over the last ten years, but there is still much work to be done to fully meet the objectives and the health care requirements of the people of Canada. The CFPC’s Report Card on the Role of the Federal Government in Health Care addresses many of the elements of the Health Accord and is family medicine’s roadmap to help the federal government once again become a leader in health care."

"The CFPC’s Patient’s Medical Home (PMH) is a demonstration of Canada’s family doctors leading health care improvement in our country," adds Dr. Francine Lemire, Executive Director and CEO of the CFPC. "The PMH is a patient-centred model of care that offers a personal family doctor, working with a health care team to provide timely access in a caring, compassionate environment. While provinces are responsible for the delivery of health care, the federal government can help make Patients’ Medical Homes a reality through dedicated funding, and supported with initiatives such as a national pharmacare program."

Canada’s family doctors want the best health care for Canadians for 2014 and beyond. Although today marks the end of the Health Accord, we hope that Canadians will urge their Members of Parliament to advocate for better health care as we head towards a general election in 2015.

The CFPC represents more than 30,000 members across the country. It is the professional organization responsible for establishing standards for the training and certification of family physicians. The CFPC reviews and accredits continuing professional development programs and materials that enable family physicians to meet certification and licencing requirements and lifelong learning interests. It also accredits postgraduate family medicine training in Canada’s 17 medical schools. The College provides quality services, supports family medicine teaching and research, and advocates on behalf of family physicians and the specialty of family medicine.

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