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Manitoba government targets hiring 100 new doctors within a year

The Manitoba government has unveiled details of one of the more ambitious items in its 2024 budget: hiring 100 new doctors by this time next year.

It’s part of a larger plan to attract, hire and retain a total of 1,000 health-care professionals in Manitoba.

Health minister Uzoma Asagwara said Thursday that the newly-created Health Care Retention and Recruitment Office is going to ensure the new hires end up staying in the province.

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“Manitoba has fewer doctors per capita than almost every other province,” said Asagwara.

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“People in Manitoba deserve better. Our new government is improving the culture in health care, and we will work as a united front with our partners to ensure that Manitobans can get connected with a family doctor faster, see a specialist, and get emergency care when they need it.”

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If the province reaches its goal of hiring 100 new doctors, it would be a new Manitoba record.

The plan has the stamp of approval from Doctors Manitoba, whose president called it an “ambitious commitment”, but an encouraging one.

“Our province has one of the biggest physician shortages in Canada, and that has a direct impact on wait times, on access to a family doctor and the ability to see a specialist,” said Dr. Michael Boroditsky in a statement.

“Setting a bold target like this demonstrates a sincere commitment to turning this situation around. Achieving what has never done before will take a true partnership with all the players including physicians and we are ready to help.”

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