Dr. Suzanne Strasberg:
I've found that one of the best ways to gain a clearer perspective on the health care system is to talk with people who work in the trenches. As President of the Ontario Medical Association (OMA), I have had the privilege to meet with many of my physician colleagues across the province and discuss issues that are important to them and their patients.
It doesn't come as much of a surprise that there is one common theme in every community. Ontario's doctors want to ensure that every patient in the province has access to a physician, and patients want timely access to the quality medical care they have grown to expect and deserve.
I don't believe these are unreasonable expectations. In fact, it's a commitment I made when I became President. I am proud to say Ontario's doctors are making a difference. Since 2003, over 800,000 patients previously without a family physician now have one. Ontario's doctors are proud of the work accomplished to date; but there remains more to do. That's why we've committed to work with the government to help another 500,000 patients find a family physician.
One of the ways we're improving patient care is with the help of other providers. When teams of health professionals including physicians, nurses, dieticians and others work together, we can provide better care to more patients. Working closely with the government, our plan is working. Currently there are over 7,500 doctors in collaborative care models providing service to over 8.5 million patients in the province. In fact, Ontario is a national leader on this front. By continuing to expand collaborative care, where providers work under the same roof, patients will continue to see improvements to their care.
Ontario's health care landscape is changing rapidly. New technologies and innovative delivery models will help us keep up with the growing demands of patients. Our number one priority is you, our patients. We are working hard to build a health care system that improves access to care for all Ontario families regardless of where they live.
● Dr. Suzanne Strasberg, OMA President 2009 - 2010. Biography.
● Statement from Dr. Suzanne Strasberg, President of the Ontario Medical Association. October 2009. H1N1 vaccination program.
● Ontario Budget 2009: Sector Highlights - Health. "Since 2003, the government has taken significant steps to restore services and critical funding to the health care sector. In 2009-10, the government is investing $13.2 billion more than in 2003-04, a 45 per cent increase. The government spends 43 cents of every program dollar on health." Includes charts.
● OMA Media Releases.