Most Canadians believe improved collaboration between doctors and other health-care professionals could help them better access the over-taxed health-care system, according to a recent survey.


Collaborative health care, however, is not seen as a cure-all for the system’s ailments, the same survey found.


The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) released the Ipsos-Reid poll during the third day of its annual meeting at the Westin Bayshore Hotel in Vancouver.


Collaborative care is doctors, nurses and other health-care professionals working together for patients, said CMA president Colin McMillan.

He called for “a comprehensive, pan-Canadian, made-in-Canada human resources strategy” to end the shortage of health-care providers in Canada. That strategy would include collaborative care.

The current standard of collaborative care differs province-by-province, and one important factor in its delivery is electronic health and medical records, McMillan said.

While the CMA supports collaborative care, most physicians (56 per cent of the 268 present) voted against an expanded role for pharmacists in collaborative care teams yesterday.

McMillan said doctors are concerned about pharmacists prescribing medication without a physician’s leadership because they do not have access to medical record information that doctors possess.