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Health & Wellness

2024 Alberta Budget Health Care Summary

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The following is a focus on the health care spending in Budget 2024 which takes a hard look at rural health delivery and increases spending for rural practitioners.

2024 Alberta Budget Health Care Summary
February 29, 2024

Refocusing Alberta’s health care system

Budget 2024 invests in a refocused health care system, so every Albertan has access to the care they need, when and where they need it.

Improving service delivery

Budget 2024 prioritizes the delivery of high quality, reliable health services across the province with an operating budget of $26.2 billion for the Health ministry, up $1.1 billion, or 4.4% from the 2023-24 forecast.
·  $475 million to support the continued implementation of the Modernizing Alberta’s Primary Health Care System, including:
o $200 million over 2 years to improve access to family physicians
o $10 million for primary health-care initiatives in Indigenous communities
o $15 million to further develop a compensation model for nurse practitioners
·  $300 million for Primary Care Networks to provide additional support for collaborative primary health-care services
·  $8 million allocated over 2 years to expand the Alberta Newborn Screening Program
·  $10 million to support the development of a province-wide midwifery strategy
·  $10 million over 2 years allocated to the Alberta Women’s Health Foundation Legacy Grant in Edmonton and $10 million to the Calgary Hospital Foundation, to support women’s health initiatives
·  $140 million per year over 3 years for the yet-to-be signed, Federal Bi-Lateral Aging with Dignity Agreement, which includes $70 million for long-term care initiatives and $70 million for home and community care initiatives
·  $1 billion over 3 years to transform the continuing care system in response to the Facility-Based Continuing Care Review
·  $1.55 billion total expense to continue building the Alberta Recovery Model and ensure anyone suffering from the deadly disease of addiction or facing mental health challenges has an opportunity to pursue recovery
Prioritizing patients
Budget 2024 invests in world-class care by reducing wait times and improving access.
·  $3.6 billion over 3 years in capital funding to maintain or expand health-care facilities throughout the province including:
o $810 million to advance the redevelopment and expansion of the Red Deer Regional Hospital, including Ambulatory Services
o $35 million to purchase new Emergency Medical Services vehicles and ambulances, upgrade the existing fleet and acquire additional equipment
o $25 million in additional funding for the Beaverlodge Municipal Hospital replacement project to support better access to health care for area residents
o $20 million over the next 3 years, including $17 million in new funding, to continue planning for a standalone Stollery Children’s Hospital
o $313 million for Alberta Surgical Initiative to help increase the number of surgical procedures performed in Alberta annually
·  $2 billion per year for Drugs and Supplemental Health benefit programs, including $883 million for the seniors drug program that supports over 700,000 seniors
Empowering health-care professionals
Budget 2024 prioritizes Alberta’s health-care workers.
·  $126 million over 3 years for the Rural Physician Expansion Program to increase rural and Indigenous access to medical education and increase the number of family medicine and generalist physicians
·  $6.6 billion for physician compensation and development programs, including:
o $129 million annually for recruitment and retention of physicians who practice full-time in underserved areas
o $12 million increase for the existing Rural Remote Northern Program
o $12 million annually to enhance physician support programs
·  $20 million per year to the Business Costs Program to enhance physician practice viability
·  $200 million over 2 years will improve access to family physicians and primary health care
·  $26 million in capital funding over 3 years for the University of Lethbridge Rural Medical Teaching School to provide more opportunities to train doctors in smaller communities

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