February 9, 2023 – The Extended Health Professionals Coalition (EHPC) is encouraged by the federal government’s recent proposal of investing $196.1 billion over 10 years for health-care services. These funds are a step in the right direction to providing better support for health workers, expanding access to services, improving access to mental health and substance use health services, and improving system performance and accountabilities.
To fully address the health-care crisis, solutions must recognize that healthcare in Canada has long been delivered through public and private systems. Healthcare that is delivered in communities by non-physicians is not publicly funded. Roughly one-third of healthcare in Canada is delivered via private delivery and funding, many of which are small businesses represented by EHPC members.
EHPC urges the federal, provincial and territorial leaders to look at progressive healthcare delivery solutions that include care delivered across public and private settings and ensure that the spectrum of Canada’s regulated health professionals are contributing to how Canadians have timely access to care.
“We encourage decision makers to broaden their understanding of Canada’s healthcare landscape. Extended health professionals working in communities play significant roles in the health of Canadians and must be included in the conversation”, said EHPC’s Chair, Ondina Love. “Addressing the many challenges facing healthcare in Canada will require all hands-on deck, and our members offer the expertise and perspective needed to keep Canadians healthy and productive.”
The EHPC comprises over 100,000 of Canada’s regulated healthcare professionals, and we speak with a common voice to ensure that health services provided in the public and private sectors are fully recognized and valued by stakeholders and decision makers. Our members are vital to the health and wellbeing of Canadians through preventative and diagnostic care. We ask that the federal, provincial and territorial governments actively include our members in the following areas:
- Addressing the health human resources crisis by investing in short and long-term retention and recruitment strategies for all healthcare practitioners via initiatives such as the expansion of the Canada Student Loan Forgiveness Program.
- Improving access to interdisciplinary community-based primary care, that includes the services provided by professionals such Audiologists, Chiropractors, Dental Hygienists, Dentists, Denturists, Dietitians, Occupational Therapists, Optometrists, Physiotherapists, Psychologists, Speech-Language Pathologists, and Social Workers.
- Facilitating the collection of workforce data to identify and understand labor trends and challenges, as well as solutions, across the public and private sectors.
EHPC looks forward to further details of the federal government’s proposal as both levels of government continue their discussions. We stand ready to work with all levels of government to support and strengthen the delivery of healthcare in Canada.
About EHPC: The EHPC is a coalition of organizations representing Canada’s Audiologists, Chiropractors, Dental Hygienists, Dentists, Denturists, Dietitians, Occupational Therapists, Optometrists, Physiotherapists, Psychologists, Speech-Language Pathologists, and Social Workers. As regulated professions, these practitioners play a vital role as part of every Canadian’s healthcare team and ensure timely access to the treatment needed. Our coalition works to ensure health services provided in the public and private sectors are fully recognized by stakeholders and decision-makers and are accessible to the Canadian public.
Chair, Extended Health Professionals Coalition
CEO, The Canadian Dental Hygienists Association
OLove@CDHA.ca | 613-224-5515