CALGARY, AB (June 5, 2013): The recent announcement of twenty-four communities chosen for Family Care Clinics (FCCs) across the province is potentially a good first step to improving primary care but with no timeline or concrete details on how they will be funded and staffed, many questions remain about their potential to improve health outcomes, the Wildrose Official Opposition said today.
At yesterday’s announcement, Premier Alison Redford said that she is “not going to put a deadline,” on when these new FCCs will be built and the Alberta government’s website indicates that only “some of the new FCCs will be operational within the year.” “These twenty-four communities have long needed improvements in primary care and we hope that this recent announcement can be a good first step,” Wildrose Health Critic Heather Forsyth said. “However, we are still disappointed at the lack of information and details coming from this government about the total cost of the clinics and how they will be integrated with the current Primary Care Networks (PCNs) that we have in place.” “We’ve been asking for more details about the PC government’s plan on Family Care Clinics from day one and unfortunately we didn’t get some of the answers we were looking for,” Forsyth said. Wildrose Seniors Critic Kerry Towle said that this announcement has the potential to be very positive as long as the government works constructively with physicians in the communities and doesn’t move to eliminate the current PCNs that are in place. “We hope the government will take the right steps to work with the health experts on the ground in these communities, including physicians, to improve primary care across the province,” Towle said. “We need a health care system that strives to put the needs of patients first, and we are cautiously optimistic that today’s announcement will help bring us one step closer to that vision.”