Albertans urged to comment on new health regulation

Massage Therapy Canada staff
February 10, 2014
By Massage Therapy Canada staff
Feb. 10, 2014 — The Alberta government is urging Albertans to take part in a month-long comment period that began Jan. 30 on the draft Health Charter and a proposed Health Advocate regulation. 
Albertans can view the draft documents and provide their comments online until March 3, the government said. Albertans’ input is important as the Health Charter and Health Advocate regulation are being finalized.

"With the Alberta Health Act now in force and an interim Health Advocate in place, we are now gathering Albertans’ comments on the draft Health Charter and proposed Health Advocate regulations. I encourage Albertans to participate as this is an important next step in getting the Office of the Health Advocates operational this spring," Fred Horne, Minister of Health, said.

The Alberta Health Act came into force on Jan. 1. It sets out clear principles to guide decision-making in the health system and reinforces the government’s commitment to the principles of the Canada Health Act. The Alberta Health Act also establishes a Health Advocate and a Health Charter.

The draft Health Charter outlines what Albertans can expect from the health system and their personal responsibilities when interacting with the system. The proposed regulation includes duties and authorities of the Health Advocate, requirements for complaint reviews, and rules for how reviews can be conducted.

"We want to hear Albertans’ comments about the Health Charter and the role of the Health Advocate. Their views are important as we lay a foundation that will guide what Albertans can expect from the health system," said Mary Marshall, Alberta's interim Health Advocate.    

This comment period is a second opportunity for Albertans to directly engage on the Health Charter since the creation of Alberta’s Health Act in 2010, when an extensive four-month consultation took place. Over 1,300 people participated in the in-person workshops, nearly 1,500 provided their inputs online and there were over 85 written submissions from stakeholder groups.

The comment process will help government launch the Office of the Health Advocates this spring and help finalize the Health Charter.

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