Emergency summit grapples with health system debilitated by COVID-19

More than 30 national and provincial health organizations banded together for an emergency summit Tuesday night to tackle the devastating effects COVID-19 has had on the country’s health-care system.

The organizations, which include the Canadian Medical Association and the Canadian Nurses Association, are particularly concerned about growing surgical backlogs and the effect that will have on patients’ quality of life for years to come.

The well-being of health workers is also top of mind, as they report feeling exhausted, demoralized and short-staffed for 18 months straight.

CMA president Dr. Katharine Smart is expected to brief reporters about the meeting Wednesday morning.

The CMA and other organizations are already working together to lobby the government to create a national health workforce agency to better plan for the future of health human resources, said Linda Silas, president of the Canadian Federation of Nurses.

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