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Government improving Primary Care Networks for Albertans

News Release

Government improving Primary Care Networks for Albertans

 

The government is acting on the findings of a Primary Care Network review aimed at improving services for Alberta patients.

“This review showed primary care networks are delivering patient-focused health care in most cases, but it also showed there are some inconsistencies. We will work with our partners to strengthen governance and accountability, set clearer expectations for service levels and revise our current funding models so they promote more team-based care.”

Sarah Hoffman, Minister of Health

There are 42 Primary Care Networks in Alberta that provide primary health care for more than three million people.

“Our philosophy is to invest in services and programs that meet the needs of our patients, and we believe in being accountable for the funds that are entrusted to us. Alberta is a leader in primary health care, and we were pleased to be involved in this process to highlight the excellent work that Alberta does. We thank Alberta Health for taking this step, and we are looking forward to finding ways we can continue to improve.”

Colleen Enns, Executive Director, Edmonton Oliver Primary Care Network

The review, which focused on a sample of Primary Care Networks, assessed financial practices and service delivery approaches. It found inconsistencies in accountability and reporting structures, service levels and approaches to team-based care and planning. There were also instances of inappropriate use of government funding.

The government has already updated some policies for Primary Care Networks that set clearer financial guidelines and it will be making more changes related to:

  • governance accountability
  • financial accountability
  • service responsibilities
  • team-based care

Alberta Health will consult with stakeholders as it looks for ways to expand after-hours access for patients and develops a new funding model that promotes more team-based care.

These changes will be made in the coming months.

A copy of the Primary Care Network Review can be found on the Alberta Health website at http://www.health.alberta.ca/initiatives/PCN-review.html

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