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Legislation to Improve Patient Access to Care

Nova Scotians will be able to get healthcare faster with new legislation introduced on March 21.

The Patient Access to Care Act includes new measures to reduce administrative burdens on healthcare providers, giving them more time to see patients. It also makes it easier for healthcare professionals from other parts of Canada to work in Nova Scotia.

The Patient Access to Care Act includes measures to reduce paperwork, allowing healthcare professionals to focus more on patient care and support healthcare recruitment and retention efforts in Nova Scotia. Highlights of the act include:

  • licensing or registration criteria will be waived for healthcare providers coming from other parts of Canada, as needed and in accordance with Canadian free trade obligations
  • regulators cannot charge healthcare professionals licensed in other parts of Canada an application fee
  • applications must be processed within five business days
  • supports the creation of regulations that will apply the above provisions to non-Canadian jurisdictions
  • allows all regulators to recognize the credentials and licences of healthcare professionals trained outside Canada
  • ensures regulated healthcare professionals can work to their full training and allows expanded scope of practice through regulations rather than legislation
  • employers will only be able to request a sick note if an employee is absent for more than five days or has already had two absences of five days or less in the previous 12-month period
  • allows the government to prescribe Workers Compensation Board forms and documents to improve the process for Nova Scotians and doctors.

Read the full news release here.

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