Al­berta for­mal­izes re­la­tion­ship with physi­cians

The McLeod River Post - - Family, Farm & Garden - Spe­cial to the Post

Pro­posed leg­is­la­tion would for­mal­ize govern­ment’s long-stand­ing re­la­tion­ship with the Al­berta Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion (AMA).

An Act to Rec­og­nize AMA Rep­re­sen­ta­tion Rights would amend cur­rent leg­is­la­tion to make the AMA the ex­clu­sive rep­re­sen­ta­tive when govern­ment con­sults physi­cians on com­pen­sa­tion and ben­e­fits.

The AMA would also be the non-ex­clu­sive rep­re­sen­ta­tive re­gard­ing other health mat­ters that con­cern physi­cians, such as team-based care or how best to use in­for­ma­tion tech­nol­ogy in the health sys­tem.

“I’m proud that our govern­ment has main­tained a col­lab­o­ra­tive and con­struc­tive re­la­tion­ship with Al­berta’s physi­cians, en­abling us to sta­bi­lize health spend­ing while im­prov­ing pa­tient care. This leg­is­la­tion was a com­mit­ment the govern­ment made as part of the re­cent agree­ment with doc­tors, and we’ve made good on that prom­ise. I thank the AMA and all physi­cians for work­ing with our govern­ment to meet Al­ber­tans’ health-care needs.”

Sarah Hoff­man, Min­is­ter of Health

Pro­posed amend­ments would also mean Al­berta Health Ser­vices rec­og­nizes the AMA as the ex­clu­sive rep­re­sen­ta­tive for ne­go­ti­at­ing cer­tain ser­vice agreements with groups of physi­cians.

“Agreements with Al­berta’s physi­cians have led the way to im­proved qual­ity and ac­cess to care for pa­tients. They have in­cluded ad­vance­ment of elec­tronic med­i­cal records, the in­tro­duc­tion and evo­lu­tion of Pri­mary Care Net­works, devel­op­ment of a provin­cial physi­cian re­source plan and pro­grams to pro­mote the most ap­pro­pri­ate care. En­sur­ing clar­ity and for­mal­iz­ing the roles of the AMA and physi­cians in this re­gard is im­por­tant to Al­ber­tans.”

Dr. Ali­son Clarke, pres­i­dent, Al­berta Med­i­cal As­so­ci­a­tion

The new leg­is­la­tion would for­mal­ize ex­ist­ing pro­cesses that have been in use be­tween govern­ment and the AMA, and it clearly es­tab­lishes and ar­tic­u­lates the roles and re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of the AMA,whilenot­grant­ing any new pow­ers.

If the bill is passed, the leg­is­la­tion would come into ef­fect upon procla­ma­tion.

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