Commentary

CEOs of Ontario’s 24 research hospitals comment on tentative Physician Services Agreement

Catherine Zahn and Karen Michell, the Chair and Executive Director of the Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario, on behalf of the 24 CEOs of Ontario’s research hospitals:

On August 14, 2016, Ontario doctors will vote on a tentative Physician Services Agreement between the Ontario Medical Association (OMA) and the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care (MOHLTC).  The 24 CEOs of Ontario’s research hospitals acknowledge and respect the diverse perspectives of doctors within our hospitals, across specialties and around the province. We understand the pros and cons of the tentative Agreement, and believe that the best choice for Ontario research hospitals is a “yes” vote.

As research hospital leaders, we are indebted to our doctors for their dedication and expertise – for the powerful contributions they make through their care, research and teaching. We know the importance of partnering with doctors and government to deliver innovative solutions that improve the lives of the patients and the communities we serve.  The tentative Agreement engages doctors as active partners in evidence-based decision-making to drive the quality of care that Ontarians deserve and expect.  The stability and predictability offered by the tentative Agreement will enhance our capacity to carry out this collective responsibility.

The MOHLTC has made it clear that it values the contributions of the academic health sciences sector.  Academic doctors make a critical contribution to the mandate of the Council of Academic Hospitals of Ontario (CAHO) to make our province healthier, wealthier and smarter.  We appreciate that the government has committed to working with doctors in our organizations, through the OMA, to ensure that the Academic Health Science Centre Alternate Funding Plans will remain in place to stabilize academic practice.

All negotiated agreements are created with a series of gives and takes.  We believe that, on balance, the tentative Agreement is worthy of a “yes” vote.