Agreement to inject nearly $256 million into N.L. healthcare system

    Monday, 25 March 2024 17:16

    By Kody Gardner

    Premier Andrew Furey was in attendance this afternoon (Dean Clarke/BayFM)

    The announcement was made Monday afternoon at the new Western Memorial Regional Hospital building.

    The premier, along with provincial and federal ministers were in Corner Brook Monday to make a significant announcement surrounding healthcare in Newfoundland & Labrador.

    In an announcement at the new yet-to-open Western Memorial Regional Hospital, Premier Andrew Furey was joined by Mark Holland, Canada’s Minister of Health, and MP Gudie Hutchings, MP for the Long Range Mountains. There, they revealed a bilateral agreement aimed at significantly enhancing healthcare access and services in the province.

    The agreement is set to infuse almost $256 million into Newfoundland and Labrador’s healthcare system. Termed the Working Together Agreement, this funding will be instrumental in supporting the province’s ambitious three-year action plan geared towards improving healthcare.

    The comprehensive plan encompasses a multifaceted approach to healthcare enhancement, targeting key areas such as family health services, workforce expansion, mental health and substance use services.

    Under the agreement, efforts will be made to increase access to primary care by introducing new family care teams and establishing urgent care centers. Additionally, new positions will be created to implement the innovative Child and Youth Community Health Services Model, further enhancing healthcare accessibility.

    A significant focus of the plan lies in addressing healthcare backlogs and expanding health services across the province. Specialized care models will be instituted to tackle surgical backlogs and certain healthcare providers, including pharmacists, will also be broadening their scope of practice by prescribing a wider range of medications. A new physician assistants program will be piloted, alongside efforts to increase midwifery positions province-wide.

    Mental health and substance use services will also benefit as the plan also aims to increase access to mental health teams and improve service availability for rural and Indigenous communities. 


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