The Alberta government is asking residents to participate in an online survey that will help the province “refocus” its public health-care system.
According to a Tuesday afternoon release, the Shape The Way survey aims to improve health outcomes for Albertans and empower health-care workers.
The survey takes approximately 10 minutes to complete and asks respondents how they feel about the province’s most recent announcement to reform the health-care system.
It also asks respondents to share the most important issue facing provincial health-care and their concerns and to rate the quality of care they received.
“We’ve heard loud and clear that the issues in the health care system need to be addressed. Input from health care professionals, patients and every Albertan is vital in creating a refocused health care system that provides Albertans timely and accessible care. The ideas, solutions and first-hand experiences shared by those on the front lines are invaluable,” Health Minister Adriana LaGrange said in an emailed statement on Tuesday.
This comes after Alberta Premier Danielle Smith announced sweeping changes to dismantle Alberta Health Services earlier this month, reducing it to one of four new service delivery organizations, all reporting directly to LaGrange.
She said some improvements have been made in finding family doctors and reducing wait times for care and surgeries, but added it’s not enough and her government needs the legislative tools to make changes.
The transformation is to take up to two years, and while Smith says front-line health jobs will be protected, “you’re going to see a process of streamlining in the management layers,” she said.
In addition to the survey, the government said five town halls were held. The province said more than 8,000 doctors, nurses and health-care professionals attended the town halls: one on Nov. 9, two on Nov. 14, one on Nov. 15 and one on Nov. 17.
Of these, three were available to all AHS staff, while two were specific to mental health and addictions staff and community partners.
The government said more information sessions and town halls will be announced in the coming months.
“Refocusing Alberta’s health care means a greater focus on mental health and addiction. We believe that every Albertan deserves an opportunity to pursue recovery. The feedback of Albertans and our community partners will be critically important in making this possible,” Mental Health and Addictions Minister Dan Williams said in an emailed statement.
— with files from Dean Bennett, The Canadian Press.
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