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ACCC Leads Study: Sustaining the Allied Health Professions

Ottawa, May 22, 2012 Research and policy development on human resources needs in health care have typically focused on nurses and physicians, but critical shortfalls are emerging in a range of allied health occupations, such as radiation and laboratory technologists, paramedics, and respiratory and occupational therapists.

“Allied health professionals are a key component of the health care team,” says James Knight, President and CEO of ACCC. “Given the involvement of these specialists in all stages of health care delivery – from diagnosis to treatment and recovery – shortages will impede access to diagnostic and therapeutic health care services, increasing wait times for medical procedures. Canadian colleges and institutes supply the graduates who fulfill these critical roles.”

Health Canada sponsored the Sustaining the Allied Health Professions study to develop a pan-Canadian approach to ensuring a sustainable supply of these health professionals. This comprehensive study outlines policy recommendations for the sector, coupled with an Innovation Guide, highlighting leading practices in allied health recruitment, retention and success.

Two working groups representing 13 stakeholders, including colleges, national professional associations of allied health professions, employers, regulators and accreditors participated in the development of the Innovation Guide and the Policy Blueprint by developing protocols and assessing innovations.

“The Canadian Healthcare System is in a crisis with ballooning costs and skills shortages, and our ability to provide cost effective care is in question,” says Shannon McDonald RRT, Registrar, Nova Scotia College of Respiratory Therapists and President, National Alliance of Respiratory Therapy Regulatory Bodies. “The Study’s Blueprint and Innovation Guide offer workable solutions to address the challenges our healthcare system currently faces.”

“This study broadens and deepens our understanding of the issues and opportunities related to sustaining the allied health professions to meet the needs of Canadians today and into the future,” said Pam McLaughlin, Dean, School of Health Sciences at Fanshawe College.

The BlueprintInnovation Guide and Research Report are available at: www.accc.ca/xp/https://www.collegesinstitutes.ca/accc_news/nr-may22-2012/.

For more information, contact:

Rosemary Lafrenière
Manager, Communications and Information Services
ACCC
Tel: 613-746-2222 ext 3123
Email: rlafreniere@accc.ca