The Canadian Medical Association (CMA) took its campaign for better seniors care to Winnipeg and Vancouver in late May to meet face-to-face with ministers, Members of Parliament (MP) and political staffers attending the Liberal and Conservative party conventions.
CMA staff and elected leaders were on hand to raise awareness among delegates and answer their questions. In Winnipeg, CMA’s President-Elect Dr. Granger Avery addressed a “standing room only” crowd at a meeting of the Liberal Party’s Seniors’ Commission, and fielded numerous questions both in the formal Q&A session and in various corridor conversations. Throughout the rest of the convention, CMA staff reinforced Dr. Avery’s message and secured many commitments from MPs interested in working with the CMA to host community roundtables on these issues in their riding over the summer.
From Winnipeg, Dr. Avery travelled to Vancouver to meet with Conservative delegates at their convention. The CMA had an information kiosk in the exhibitors’ area where CMA staff engaged a steady stream of delegates and MPs interested in seniors care. Conservative MPs also expressed interest in partnering with the CMA to organize public roundtables in their ridings to discuss how we can make seniors care a part of the upcoming federal-provincial-territorial health accord.
Following these two conventions, the CMA is encouraged by the interest demonstrated by the governing party, and the official opposition, regarding the issues we raised. Based on past experience, we are confident that the NDP, Greens and the BQ will also be open to continuing the work on seniors care. With your help, we can get this issue onto the agenda for the next health accord, and help improve seniors care across the country.