Primary, Hospital, and Long-Term Care

There must be a commitment to ensure the same level of access to primary health care as there is for public education. Every Albertan should be part of a physician-led primary care team in their area.

To realize this plan, government would create a Healthcare Workforce Planning and Implementation Group that would provide recommendations regarding future workforce needs, including general workforce numbers, types of needed healthcare workers and infrastructure requirements to support new staff.

Create and Expand Primary Care Teams by recruiting up to 3000 Nurse Practitioners, Physician Assistants and Clinical Assistants to allow existing primary care physicians to treat more patients. This would mean funding physician assistants as part of physician led primary care teams and recruiting clinical assistants to these teams.

Recruit and train up to 1000 new family doctors to address our shortfall and account for a growing population.

  • Adopt a Payment Model similar to the Longitudinal Funding Plan of BC so that financial incentives align with desired outcomes. A transition away from a fee for service dominated system will allow for better tracking of outcomes, targeted investment for high value care, and more budget predictability. 
  • Create Rural Healthcare Training Opportunities to attract physicians and other healthcare staff to rural Alberta. This would mean expanding medical training for doctors and other healthcare staff (such as Physician  Assistants) into Lethbridge and Grande Prairie.  These programs would train healthcare workers together so that they are ready to work in a primary care team setting.
  • Attract Canadian medical students studying abroad by expanding the two year post graduate medical education program and provide opportunities for the thousands of Canadian medical students enrolled in a foreign program.
  • Work with medical schools to provide bridge training so foreign-trained doctors who have immigrated to Canada can get the education they need to practice in Alberta.

Other Initiatives:

  • Explore regional payment structures so that we attract primary care physicians in urban and rural areas and fund an education model that supports physicians in their work as mentors, teachers, and role models for trainees.
  • Consult with the medical community on funding for office costs so that physicians are fairly compensated for their office rent and they can hire the necessary support staff. 
  • Stop the rhetoric. Health care workers across the province deserve support from elected officials. Retention and recruitment go hand in hand. We must create an environment that celebrates health care workers. Engaged teams provide better care. Start caring for the carers.

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