Poll shows most Albertans favour renewable energy over coal
We limited the assessment of net annual migration patterns to physicians who graduated medical school before or during 2000 to avoid counting graduates who were still in residency training in 2006. We performed all other assessments using data on physicians who graduated before or during 2006. We performed simple frequency analysis by birth country, Canadian medical school of graduation, rural versus nonrural address and whole-or partial-county Health Professional Shortage Area status. We performed 2 analysis to test for significant differences between US-and Canadian-educated physician practice locations. The number of graduates of Canadian medical schools who practised in direct patient care in the United States by graduation year was obtained from both the 2004 and 2006 AMA Physician Masterfiles and was compared with Canadian physician migration data. To quantify longitudinal effects, patterns were averaged between 1960 and 2000 to account for possible attrition due to retirement (lower bound) and for graduates who might still be in residency training (upper bound). Despite delays in data reporting and other inaccuracies such as confusion about work versus practice address, the AMA Physician Masterfile is the most complete and authoritative source of information on physicians in the United States, particularly at a national level of analysis. 16 , 17 Previous studies that have compared AMA Physician Masterfile data with physician census surveys have found that AMA Physician Masterfile data were reliable and adequate for work-force projections and policy studies when aggregated to the state level. 17 We have previously shown that the AMA Physician Masterfile is valid for rural and whole-county Health Professional Shortage Areas where the accuracy of the data is nearly 90% for county-of-practice classification. 18 Canadian physician databases suffer from many of the same lags and accuracy problems as the AMA Physician Masterfile for similar reasons, particularly the administrative sources. US and Canadian databases were not directly linked but contemporary databases were used for temporal comparisons and to fill in gaps in each about the physicians who train in Canada and migrate to or from the United States. Download as PowerPoint Slide Fig.
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Photograph by: John Lucas John Lucas , John Lucas/Edmonton Journal EDMONTON – A new poll shows 80 per cent of Albertans surveyed would like renewable energy used to generate electricity instead of coal. Commissioned by the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, the poll also found that two-thirds of Albertans are willing to pay higher prices for electricity generated by wind and solar power, and that a majority are convinced there are negative health effects related to burning coal. aWhen we saw the numbers, we were knocked out,a Gideon Forman, executive director of the Toronto-based physiciansa group, said Wednesday. aWe were just struck by how widespread the support was. aPeople are in agreement and in very large numbers.a Conducted in February by the market research firm Oraclepoll, the sampling of 750 people revealed 76 per cent of Albertans believe government should encourage businesses to use renewable energy, and that 74 per cent believe coal should be phased out if alternatives exist to meet the provinceas energy needs. Seventy-six per cent believe pollution produced by burning coal can harm the health of seniors, and 70 per cent believe those emissions also pose a risk to children. aAlbertans are suddenly becoming more aware of the effects of coal, and if we value their health then we need to start exploring reasonable alternatives,a said Dr. Joe Vipond, a member of the association who serves as an emergency room physician in Calgary. aItas not rocket science.a Donna Kennedy-Glans, Albertaas associate minister of electricity and renewable energy, agreed the government needs to reduce its reliance on coal, but said the transformation has to be carried out in a prudent manner. The physiciansa association wants coal-generated electricity phased out over 10 years, but the province deems it unrealistic. aI find the possibility for mixed generation very promising,a Kennedy-Glans said. aThe question is timing. If we were to just stop, we would be fiscally in a very difficult position.a Early last year, the physiciansa group published research that said pollution from the coal-fired plants contributes to more than 100 deaths and $300 million in medical costs in Alberta each year. Kennedy-Glans said a collaborative initiative whose members include representatives of industry, government and other interested parties has not established a connection between emissions from coal-fired electricity and such health effects. aI find that part of the (physiciansa) work very frustrating,a the associate minister said.
Aging doctors to be put under the microscope in Nova Scotia
(File) Ageism in health care needs to end, doctor says The Nova Scotia College of Physicians and Surgeons is moving ahead with plans to assess the competency of aging doctors. Recently, a 75-year-old doctor in northern Cape Breton voluntarily gave up her licence after she started to lose her hearing. In response, Dr. Gus Grant, registrar and CEO of the college, said there may be cases where a doctor can’t handle the full range of services due to an age-related limitation. Audio | Monitoring doctors in Nova Scotia If you look at the large group of physicians who are over the age of 70 if 70 is the number and I think 70 seems to be where there’s a line in the sand drawn by other provincesif you look at that larger group of physicians it would be worthwhile for the college to help those physicians identify their learning needs, help them tailor their practice to their skills, and to ensure confidence, to ensure public safety, he said. Grant said there are hundreds of doctors in Nova Scotia still working in their senior years andadvancing age should not, by itself, force a doctor to retire. He said theCollege of Physicians and Surgeons takes all complaints seriously, no matter what age the doctor is. Preventing problems When Nova Scotia adopts a monitoring program, it will join provinces such as Manitoba where doctors aged 75 years and older are tested every five years. Dr. Terry Babick, deputy registrar of the Manitoba College of Physicians and Surgeons, said most senior doctors offer adequate care, but occasionally problems arise. If in fact there is actually a threat to the public then the entire issue takes on a much more serious note, because these are generally educational in nature but if we perceive that there is a threat to public safety then we inform the registrar immediately, he said. In Manitoba, doctors are assessed through a random review of their charts. Babick said when minor problems are discovered the doctor isasked to take additional training.