Investigation subsequent to the Health Minister’s statement - The National Physician Survey Has Not Been Manipulated


For immediate release

Investigation subsequent to the Health Minister’s statement

The National Physician Survey Has Not Been Manipulated

Montréal, January 15, 2015¾ The Québec Medical Association (QMA) and the Canadian Medical Association (CMA), proponents of the National Physician Survey in Québec, confirm that the survey data, which is currently a topic of debate between Health Minister Dr. Gaétan Barrette and the Fédération des médecins omnipraticiens du Québec, are accurate and representative of reality. Subsequent to serious accusations by the Minister, the two associations conducted a due diligence review, and a longitudinal analysis of the database was done. No statistical anomalies were found in the data collected over the last decade from all the physicians in Canada related to this annual survey. If physicians had been encouraged to “respond more positively because the spontaneous answers that were given and reflected reality were unfavourable,” as Dr. Barrette stated, then the results would present a distinct variation at that specific time in the survey.

In short, the 10-year data show that the number of hours worked by physicians in Québec has been rising for several years, whereas on average this number has been dropping in the other provinces. Yet the increase in the number of hours worked in Québec has not resulted in an improvement in accessibility to health care, contrary to the other provinces where the number of services provided to the population is rising.

“This approach and debate are taking us away from the real issues,” stated Dr. Laurent Marcoux, president of the QMA and a member of the CMA’s Board of Directors. “Instead, the members of the medical profession and the government should be focusing their efforts on improving health care services. The QMA released an op-ed today that presents the conclusions of a comparative analysis related to the ways of doing things in three Canadian provinces: British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario. The solution includes three winning conditions: the electronic medical record, the organization of work and compensation methods. The status quo is not a solution and physicians are ready to work with the government to reach a consensus.”

About the QMA

The Québec Medical Association is made up of close to 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.

About the CMA

The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) is the national voice of Canadian physicians. Founded in 1867, the CMA is a voluntary professional organization representing more than 80,000 of Canada’s physicians and comprising 12 provincial and territorial medical associations and 60 national medical organizations. CMA’s mission is helping physicians care for patients. The CMA will be the leader in engaging and serving physicians and be the national voice for the highest standards for health and health care.

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Denise Pelletier

Communications Coordinator

Québec Medical Association

Tel.: 514 866-0660