The QMA Unveils an Action Plan for Overdiagnosis That Would Allow Major Health Budget Savings

Montréal, August 18, 2014 - The Québec Medical Association (QMA) is embarking on a new phase today in its effort to tackle the issue of overdiagnosis by unveiling an action plan that would allow major health budget savings. The plan is a result of concerted action between the main stakeholders in the health care system - physicians, representatives of medical and professional associations, the Collège des médecins du Québec and other professional orders, regional agencies and patient advocacy groups - subsequent to the first Québec Symposium on Overdiagnosis.

Following the release of this action plan, the QMA requested a meeting with the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr. Gaétan Barrette, in order to coordinate the efforts to be deployed over the next few years to reach the expected results.

This action plan is the culmination of a process started in April 2013 with the publication of a discussion paper in which the QMA addressed the urgent need to optimize clinical practice in order to redirect approximately $5 billion to those activities that are most useful and relevant to patients. The goal of the action plan released today is to guide the actions that will be taken to reduce and prevent overdiagnosis. It presents the main orientations and potential solutions.

The issue of overdiagnosis generated considerable interest among the general public and health care stakeholders at the symposium and the launch of the Choisir avec soin campaign last April. The latest newsstand version of L’Actualité focuses on this priority issue for the Québec health care system.

Because overdiagnosis is a global phenomenon, the QMA's initiatives are also stirring international interest. At the suggestion of the well-known British Medical Journal, the QMA will give an account of its work and achievements in this area at the second international conference on the prevention of overdiagnosis in Oxford, England, in a few weeks. At the request of European government agencies/EU paying agents, the QMA will present the results of its efforts in November.

"Overdiagnosis greatly impacts the quality and accessibility of the health care offered to patients, and as a result, the efficiency of the entire health care system," stated QMA President Dr. Laurent Marcoux. "This problem has become a priority and we can no longer ignore it."

About  the QMA

The QMA comprises some 10,000 general practitioners, specialists, residents and medical students. Its mission is to bring together members of the Québec medical community in a context that promotes reflection and action in the best interests of the health of Quebecers.



Noémie Prégent-Charlebois
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