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Health Announcements Galore 

Health Minister Jean-Yves Duclos announces drug plan changes for PEI and signs agreements to improve health services in Yukon and the Northwest Territories.

On that, and more, here is your Syntax Weekly Health Round-Up. 

On the Hill 

  • The House of Commons and the Senate are now adjourned for the summer. The House is scheduled to return on Monday, September 18, while the Senate is scheduled to return on Tuesday, September 19.  
  • Around Cabinet
    • Minister of Health Jean-Yves Duclos made the provincial and territorial rounds this week, announcing drug plan changes in PEI and agreements to improve health services in Yukon and the Northwest Territories. The drug plan changes for PEI, which took effect on July 1, enhanced the Catastrophic Drug Program by lowering the cap on the amount of money a household needs to spend out of pocket on eligible medication through the addition of more income threshold levels and adjustments to household income expenditure calculations. The Agreements in Principle signed with the Territories were a result of the re-negotiated Canada Health Transfer (completed earlier in the year), delivering long-term predictable funding and an immediate top-up to the Territories’ 2022-23 Canada Health Transfer payments. 
    • Using the International Council of Nurses Congress as the background, Minister Duclos was joined by Chief Nursing Officer Dr. Leigh Chapman to announce over $2.5 million in funding to support the project Nursysin Canada, a national nurse database undertaken by the Canadian Council for Practical Nurse Regulators to allow the exchange of information about a nurse’s licensing history. The project is designed to support health human resources by simplifying workforce planning. 
    • The federal government announced $13 million in funding to community-based projects across British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Ontario that support Indigenous mental health through a variety of approaches, including strengthening cultural connections, supporting culturally informed mental health resources, and providing peer support. The funding is intended to help address the disproportionate impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the mental health of Indigenous individuals. 
    • Minister of Mental Health Carolyn Bennett announced an investment of nearly $3 million to support three clinical trials that will examine psilocybin-assisted psychotherapy as a potential treatment option for alcohol use disorder, treatment-resistant depression, and end-of-life psychological distress in advanced-stage cancer patients. 
  • Around the Dominion
    • Newfoundland and Labrador announced it is increasing the Rural Dental Bursary Program and the Specialist Dental Bursary Program from $25,000 to $50,000 per bursary to recruit and retain dentists in the province. The province also announced it has reached a tentative collective agreement with the Registered Nurses’ Union which awaits ratification from union members. The province also took steps to reduce administrative burdens for physicians by eliminating an operational fee for its Electronic Medical Record program. 
    • The government of Manitoba introduced legislation to end its collection of social responsibility fees from cannabis retailers retroactive to Jan. 1, 2022. The six per cent social responsibility fee was announced in 2018 as a regulatory fee to be paid by all provincially licensed cannabis retailers on recreational cannabis revenue as a means for retailers to contribute to the social costs associated with cannabis legalization. Going forward, retailers will continue to support social responsibility efforts through the existing legislated price markup. 
    • Saskatchewan announced that the first of several groups of Registered Nurses from the Philippines are soon to arrive in the province. Groups of RNs with conditional job offers will arrive in Saskatchewan on a regular basis for in-person training. They’ll be able to begin their employment with the Saskatchewan Health Authority once their in-person training is completed.  
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