People in rural areas have a higher burden of illness, reduced life expectancy, and are often older, poorer, and sicker than urban populations. Poor health impacts quality of life as well as economic potential. When rural communities are healthy, they can fully contribute to Canada’s economy. When they do better, Canada does better.
College of Family Physicians, Society of Rural Physicians in Canada, CIHI and others
Progress Made in the Rural Road Map
The Rural Road Map Implementation Committee (RRMIC) has made significant progress raising awareness across Canada about the need for improved access to rural health care close to home, as highlighted in the attached update.
Emerging collaborative efforts have been made with the RRMIC and organizations such as:
– HealthCareCAN, Accreditation Canada, and the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI): mobilize discussions about access to rural patient transfers
– Indigenous health physician leaders with the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada (AFMC), CFPC, Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (Royal College), and Indigenous Physicians Association of Canada (IPAC): develop a framework for medical education of Indigenous health
The Federation of Medical Regulatory Authorities of Canada (FMRAC): explore ways to reduce barriers to licensure for physicians to practice in rural communities where needed.
While we have made major strides, much work still needs to be done by not only the RRMIC but by leaders, health care providers, and administrators of health care institutions and rural communities who work and live with, and provide care for, rural and Indigenous populations.