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Statement on the action plan for equitable health services

Today, the Minister of Health announced the government's plan to improve access to health care for New Brunswickers. The creation of a number of provincial programs, the integration of several existing but disparate services, and the addition of several others is good news for patients. Services focused on our seniors, children's mental health, and teaching our next generation are needed and we welcome their expansion.

We note that these services are available to all New Brunswickers in their language of choice and are located throughout the province. The New Brunswick Medical Society continues to maintain that access to health care should depend primarily on medical need, and that all New Brunswickers deserve access to health care in their language of choice.

This announcement committed to several feasibility studies conducted over the next five years to examine several other notable services. Doctors want to be involved in health system planning and must be consulted throughout these studies. Feasibility means more than budget lines; it also means impacts on the quality of medical care, which is our first concern.

New Brunswick's doctors are primarily concerned with patients, and their access to high quality medical care. We believe strongly that doctors have a role to play in system planning and have outlined a series of action items to improve our health care system, which can be found on our website.

Robert Desjardins, MD FRCPC
President, New Brunswick Medical Society