Alberta spends nearly half of the provincial budget on healthcare. Without addressing the continuing increases in healthcare costs, we will never achieve fiscal sustainability. Alberta Health has consistently exceeded its annual budget by hundreds of millions of dollars per year since 2013, showing a poor ability to plan.
The Alberta Party Caucus has proposed a different way of doing things, charting a path to financial stability, encouraging innovation in the healthcare sector, and making sure the quality of our system rises to meet the needs of Albertans. Some of these ideas include the following:
- Review all unfilled AHS management positions. Position’s unfilled for longer than one year will be eliminated and removed from the budget.
- Create a wellness strategy focused on mental health, long term care and chronic conditions like dementia that will help keep people healthier, and allow them to live fulfilling lives in their community for as long as possible.
- Develop practices that allow trained and licensed healthcare professionals, such as EMS or nurse practitioners, more discretion in directing medical care.
- Deliver cost savings by reforming EMS dispatch and practices so that paramedics are able to spend more time in our communities and less time in the hospital.
- Conduct a review to eliminate duplication and redundancies between AHS and Alberta Health.
- Empower front-line healthcare professionals to make changes that enhance service delivery, improve patient outcomes and reduce costs.
- Review and identify real estate owned by AHS that is underutilized and divest properties where there is no plan to use them again.
- Create more long-term care beds, more options for rehabilitation, and more flexibility to receive treatment at home. Many patients being treated in acute care facilities would be better served transitioning to appropriate care.