MD Groups Told To Cut The Red Tape

MD groups told to cut the red tape
Speed up recognition of foreign-trained doctors, Kenney says

By Susan Delacourt
The Toronto Star (Canada), December 2, 2009–md-groups-told-to-cut-the-red-tape

Ottawa — Immigration Minister Jason Kenney is accusing physicians' organizations in the provinces of dragging their feet in the effort to speed up recognition of foreign-trained doctors.

Kenney told reporters that the foot-dragging has a cost to Canada.

'It's no secret that a lot of foreign-trained medical professionals have significant hurdles in getting their credentials recognized,' he said Tuesday. 'It's a huge opportunity cost that's lost to us, to encourage foreign-trained medical doctors to come to Canada and have them end up cleaning hotel rooms.'

On Monday, Ottawa and the provinces announced a major new deal to speed up foreign-credential recognition for eight professions, including architects and engineers but not doctors, at least not until 2012.

In his testimony to the Commons immigration committee Tuesday, Kenney said the physicians' organizations represent an example of the frustration his government is feeling. 'There are some of the major professional agencies, let's make no bones about this, who are less willing to collaborate, less willing to streamline the process and cut the red tape,' he said.

But Kathryn Clarke, senior communications coordinator for the Ontario College of Physicians and Surgeons, says rapid progress is being made in the bid to get foreign-trained doctors working in Canada by all provinces.

'We effectively are registering international medical graduates on a regular basis,' Clarke said. 'There are a lot of misconceptions.'


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