Alberta government proposes legislation to “improve public health care”
File photo. Health Minister Tyler Shandro at a recent press conference. Credit to Government of Alberta
The UCP government has announced proposed changes it says will modernize and improve public health care.
On Monday (July 6), Health Minister Tyler Shandro unveiled a number of amendments to health legislation in the province.
Bill 30, the Health Statutes Amendment Act, aims to streamline the approval process for chartered surgical facilities, make it easier for doctors to enter into alternative relationship plans for compensation, and enable the government to contract with a range of organizations to operate medical clinics.
Shandro says these proposed amendments will ensure patients’ voices are included in the health-care system, help reduce surgical wait times and clarify roles and accountabilities of health system partners. “We are ensuring the legislation governing our health system reflects our modern reality, and enables future innovation.”
Bill 30 would also repeal some legislation that no longer applies, since the bills were written when Alberta had multiple health regions.
Proposed Bill 30, the Health Statutes Amendment Act, include:
- Supporting and strengthening the work of the Health Quality Council of Alberta so it can drive health system improvements and positive change for patients and families.
- Increasing the number of public members on Health Professional Regulatory College councils to ensure Albertans have a stronger voice and greater role in professional oversight.
- Streamlining the approval process for chartered surgical facilities to operate so they can provide more high-quality, publicly funded surgeries to help reduce surgical wait times without compromising patient safety or quality of care.
- Making it easier for physicians to enter into alternative relationship plans for compensation.
- Enabling government to contract with a range of organizations to operate medical clinics so physicians can focus on providing patient care, rather than administration.
- Clarifying the role of Alberta Health Services as the province’s single health authority, with Covenant Health as a strategic partner and the largest faith-based health-care provider.
- Ensuring the Hospital Privileges Appeals Board continues to have a strong, qualified group of members to review grievances brought forward by medical staff against hospital boards.
- Clarifying COVID-19 quarantine requirements under the Public Health Act to clearly articulate that all international travellers must quarantine for 14 days while the related chief medical officer of health orders are in effect.