Quebec’s MD express support for the Chaoulli decision
7/21/2005 12:08 PM GMT (TransWorldNews)
As much as 68% of Quebec doctors are in favour of the Supreme Court decision that grants Quebecers the right to take out private insurance policies to cover healthcare costs that are borne by the public system.
72% of Quebec’s medical community believes that the decision will result in shorter waiting lists and an increased service offering. Furthermore, only 42% of Quebec doctors indicated that they would spend more time in the private sector if they were legally allowed to do so.
These two findings were the highlights of a large-scale survey that was conducted by Léger Marketing for the Quebec Medical Association (QMA). The research encompassed all members of Quebec’s medical community.
According to QMA president Dr. Robert Ouellet, the survey shows beyond a doubt that Quebec physicians are more committed than ever to their patients’ well-being and wish to improve access to health care. “Quebec’s medical community is definitely open to allowing the private sector to contribute to healthcare delivery, to the extent that it would create better access,” stated Dr. Ouellet.
Moreover, almost all of Quebec’s physicians (94%) believe that current reforms require some adjustments in order to strengthen the essential role played by medical clinics in delivering primary care services. “We are hardly surprised by this opinion," observed Dr. Ouellet, "which demonstrates the medical community’s immense support for the QMA’s position. Our Association has, on several occasions – including before parliamentary committees – conveyed to the government that any success in reforming primary care services would of necessity require the involvement of medical clinics.” It should also be noted that 93% of physicians want to participate in the debate on healthcare reform. “Doctors do not want to be watching from the sidelines,” declared Dr. Ouellet.
A number of other points of the survey merit examination. These include the 68% of physicians who are against the introduction of a new, dedicated healthcare tax. With regard to work organization, 73% of physicians believe that they need to rethink their work methods in order to improve population health, while 84% are open to the idea of sharing responsibility for performing certain procedures with other professionals, if they believe that this practice might contribute to improved access to health care.
“Quebec’s doctors are sending a clear message," pointed out Dr. Ouellet. “All possible solutions should be analyzed with a view to resolving the glaring problems we are currently experiencing with regard to access. We need to approach this debate – which has only been put off for too long – in a collaborative manner.”
The president of the QMA reminded his audience that a delegation of Quebec physicians will be participating this August in a General Council session of the Canadian Medical Association. Discussions will focus on the public/private interface in healthcare financing and delivery.
The Léger Marketing report is available for perusal by the media at the following Internet address: http://www.amq.ca/sondage_LegerAMQ/FinalMedia-AMQ.pdf.
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Source: Chantal Mantha