Family medicine in Canada: vision for the future.

2004.
College of Family Physicians of Canada.

Canada is facing a crisis. Timely access to health care services is getting progressively worse for Canadians. The single biggest reason for this is a severe shortage of health professionals. High on the list of those in short supply are family doctors. More than 4 million Canadians cannot find family physicians to care for them. Compared to people with family physicians, those that have no family doctors are more vulnerable to prolonged wait times throughout the system and are less satisfied with the performance of all other health professionals, institutions, and governments.

The College of Family Physicians of Canada’s “Vision” paper reviews evidence of the access issues faced by Canadians and public poll indicators of their perceptions and preferences, discusses medical student and resident training challenges, and provides an analysis of the many factors related to these issues as well as opportunities that could be pursued. It highlights concerns and recommends steps that must be taken by governments, medical schools, and health professionals to ensure that family doctors and the discipline of family medicine will be the vital entity that Canadians want at the centre of their health care system long into the future. 

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