By Gabriela Perdomo - Thursday, April 12, 2012 - 0 Comments
“Call as soon as you’re pregnant,” is what busy midwifery clinics advice Canadian women to do, and more and more moms-to-be are running to the phone as soon as they get a positive test result. A lucky few will get on a waiting list, even fewer will get to see a midwife.
Midwives are becoming increasingly popular across the country. Their job is backed by glowing patient reviews and by a swath of independent reports that praise the nurturing, safe, and low-cost approach to birthing championed by midwifery.
But while midwives are all the rage, you’d never know it from looking at their salaries.
Data provided by the Canadian Association of Midwives show the vast majority of them earn annual incomes of about $65,000, whether they are salaried public employees, like nurses, or independent professionals, like most family doctors.
Even in Ontario and Alberta, the highest paying provinces, only a handful of them (barely) break the $100,000 ceiling. In comparison, the lowest-paid salaried nurse in Ontario made $78,054 in 2009.
By Julia Belluz - Friday, February 24, 2012 at 1:02 PM - 0 Comments
“Since Ontario’s doctors are now the best paid in the country, it is reasonable to set a goal of allowing no increase in total compensation.”—Don Drummond, Commission on the Reform of Ontario’s Public Services
The dust has settled from last week’s Drummond report, which landed with both a thud (its 500 pages outlined suggested incisions to public sector spending) and a whimper (commentators said the economist’s policy recommendations about health care were the same tired ones we’ve heard for decades, and that the report was nothing more than a well-timed exercise in political theatre by Ontario’s McGuinty government.)
Still, at least one disputatious question lingered: How richly are Ontario physicians compensated?
At a time when the Ministry of Health is entering fee-deal talks with the province’s doctors, Drummond’s suggestion that “Ontario’s doctors are now the best paid in the country” peeved the Ontario Medical Association, which sits across the table from the government in the negotiations.
OMA president Dr. Stewart Kennedy said Drummond was off. “CIHI (the Canadian Institute for Health Information) states the average gross payment for a family doctor in Ontario ranks eighth out of 10 provinces and is below the national average,” he retorted in a statement.
By Erica Alini - Wednesday, February 15, 2012 at 5:16 PM - 0 Comments
Nearly a third of his suggested cuts concern healthcare
You might as well call him Dr. No–as in, no full-day kindergarten, no more small class sizes, no pay increases for doctors, and so on.
Don Drummond, a former TD economist and chair of Ontario’s commission on public-service reform, has unveiled his much-anticipated report on how to restore the fiscal health of Canada’s largest province. Drummond’s two-volume, 532-page tome crushed Ontarians’ morale on Wednesday–as well as the table onto which Ontario Provincial Police officers unloaded copies of the report during the media lock-up this morning, according to the Toronto Star.
Drummond has predicted that Ontario’s deficit will balloon to $30.2 billion in the next seven years, unless the province manages to contain total yearly spending increases to 0.8 per cent. Nearly a third of his suggested cuts concern healthcare–unsurprising, given that public spending there has been growing at an eye-popping average annual rate of 6.3 per cent over the past five years.
But it’s not just doctors who are up in arms against the Drummond report. There’s enough in there to make just about anybody mad: The document, in fact, recommends raising the retirement age for teachers; scrapping a new 30 per cent Ontario tuition grant for undergraduate students (unless the budget for post-secondary education can be otherwise contained to 1.5 per cent annual growth); axing a 10 per cent rebate on electrical bills; closing one of the two head offices of the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation, as well as shutting two casinos in Niagara Falls.
“Ontario faces more severe economic and fiscal challenges than Ontarians realize,” Drummond said. And that, in all likelihood, was the main point of his report: to deliver a shocking wake-up call, as Adam Radwanski noted in The Globe and Mail last weekend.
“Our message will strike many as profoundly gloomy,” Drummond said Wednesday. “It is one that Ontarians have not heard, certainly not in the recent election campaign, but one this commission believes it must deliver.”