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Target AHS before asking front-line workers to take a hit: Forsyth

EDMONTON, AB (March 20, 2013): Take a look at salaries of AHS executives and upper management before cutting into funding for front-line health professionals, Wildrose Health Critic Heather Forsyth said today. After signing onto an agreement in principle with physicians across the province before the election, the PC government since then has torn up that agreement by breaking its commitment and is now asking for doctors to accept a $275 million dollar funding reduction to accommodate new doctors entering the province.

 “While a typical family physician takes in $175,000 after their overhead fees, senior vice presidents in AHS can make up to $515,000,” Forsyth said.  “Will the Health Minister then show some leadership and be asking AHS managers, like the VP of Linens, to find a way to cut their own salaries?” Forsyth also noted that the junior vice presidents at AHS can make up to $220,000, while the current Deputy Minister of Health makes up to $364,000. One of the recommendations of the Wildrose Financial Recovery Plan to return Alberta to a cash surplus by 2014 is to reduce salaries, benefits, bonuses and severances in AHS and government bureaucracy by 20 per cent over the next four years. “Given that this government recently gave themselves an 8 % pay raise and gave their own Deputy Ministers a pay hike in June, will the Health Minister commit to cutting these salaries before asking our front-line healthcare workers to take a hit?” Forsyth asked.