CMA Health Summit

Engaging with members

A PRIORITY FOR THE CMA

This past August, the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) set out to launch a national conversation about innovation in health care at its inaugural Health Summit in my hometown of Winnipeg. The event brought together 750 physicians, innovators, policy-makers and patients to discuss technology, innovation and improving health care across Canada.

To set the stage for the Summit, the CMA and Ipsos released a study entitled Shaping the Future of Health and Medicine, which asked Canadians how they felt about technological developments in health such as virtual care, big data and more. The Google Generation (Canadians aged 18–34) turned out to be frequent users of the health care system, with a self- reported average of 11 or more visits each year. The study also revealed that 7 in 10 Canadians would take advantage of virtual physician visits and many believe that they would lead to more timely and convenient care. Video highlights of the Summit are available as well as a summary of panel discussions and participant led discussions. We invite you to stay tuned to www.cma.ca to learn more about the next steps for this important conversation.

Following the Summit, physicians gathered for the CMA’s Annual General Meeting and General Council. Throughout a spirited discussion, we learned that physicians want to use these meetings as an open policy forum to help shape CMA’s advocacy work. You spoke — and we listened. Our 2019 meeting will include the Health Summit, an in-depth policy discussion within the context of General Council, and the Annual General Meeting.

The annual meeting is just one way the CMA is engaging with its members on policy and advocacy discussions. Members can submit policy proposals year-round, ensuring that timely issues are considered and acted upon.

Members can also participate in Communities of Interests. The initial group of communities will focus on sparking change in Indigenous health, gender equity, the health of marginalized communities, medical assistance in dying and substance use.
Grants to support communities of interest will be awarded next year, and the CMA will be launching a virtual platform where even more communities can be hosted and supported online.

We’re also making our way to you, in different regions of our vast country. We will be hosting regional member forums in early 2019, where we’ll connect directly with our members. We hope to see many of you as we make our way across Canada.

Dr. Gigi Osler,
CMA President