The new president of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) said Wednesday he fears the country’s fragile health-care system will deteriorate further without an injection of cash — and a plan to increase the number of doctors and other health care professionals.
Dr. Alika Lafontaine, an anesthesiologist in Grande Prairie, Alta., and the group’s first Indigenous president, told CBC News that Canada’s health care is in “dire” straits, with quality care severely limited in some parts of the country.
He pointed to recent emergency room closures in Ottawa, southwestern Ontario, Quebec and other locales and eye-popping ER wait times in major cities like Toronto and Montreal as terrible precedents undermining the longstanding Canadian promise of timely access to care for all who need it.
“We’ve been saying for a while that we’re concerned about collapse. And in some places, collapse has already happened,” Lafontaine said.