On Tuesday May 23, a survey was distributed to all Ontario Medical Association (OMA) District 11 (Toronto) physicians and trainees. This survey, asked members to select and rank 5 priorities out of a list of 16 that they would like to see reflected in the new Physician Services Agreement (PSA).
While Canadian Doctors for Medicare fully support member engagement and open communication between members and the elected leadership, it is the content of the survey we find troubling. Two of the priorities presented are:
“Allow patients to pay for the second issue if presenting with 2 problems” and “Patient accountability: co-payments; no show fee code”
Proposals that require patients to pay out-of-pocket for medically necessary care, already publicly insured, are highly problematic. Not only does the evidence show that co-payments and user fees decrease medically necessary care, especially for low income patients, but the priorities under consideration are in violation of the Canada Health Act, and contravene the principles of equity and universality that uphold Medicare.
In response to the survey, CDM chair Dr. Danyaal Raza sent an open letter to the OMA leadership. To read our full response, see the PDF below: