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Statement on An Act to Amend the Public Health Act

“In 2014, the New Brunswick Medical Society called on the provincial government to enact legislation to ensure the independence of medical officers of health and we are encouraged to see the introduction of such legislation today.

However, New Brunswick doctors continue to be extremely concerned with the proposed restructuring of public health resources announced by the Minister of Health on August 31st.  We are particularly concerned with how this restructuring will impact the ability of the Chief Medical Officer of Health for New Brunswick to protect the public.

We are concerned that the new structure may impede Public Health’s ability to address outbreaks as well as the chronic diseases epidemic in the province. We know from experience with past outbreaks in other Canadian jurisdictions that strong, centralized coordination can be a key factor in the ability of Public Health officials to quickly bring a situation under control.

The Chief Medical Officer of Health for New Brunswick needs to have access to sufficient funding and resources to deliver on her mandate to improve, promote, and protect the health of the people of New Brunswick.”

Dr. Dharm Singh, MD, FACS 

President, New Brunswick Medical Society

Media Contact: Cara Smith, media@nbms.nb.ca