AHS payments need consistency and structure

April 6, 2023

Dr. Fredrykka Rinaldi, AMA President

Dear Members,

The AMA Agreement package includes an AMA-Alberta Health Services Memorandum of Understanding with an Engagement Framework for physician compensation in AHS facilities. The AMA has been advocating for this approach, including: consistent, transparent principles; structure that guides policy according to system objectives; clear roles and responsibilities; physician engagement; and dispute resolution.

There are various ongoing discussions that we feel should be linked by a framework and principles. This would enable AHS to:

  • Review the Physician On-Call Program to align with concurrent reviews of alternative relationship plans or AHS payment arrangements.
  • Apply suitable/equitable solutions if circumstances require new, special arrangements with physician groups using stipends, income guarantees or broadly defined ARPs.
  • Take a broader approach (e.g., including necessary SOMB changes) to determine appropriate overhead charges for physicians working in AHS.

Many years of ad hoc approaches to AHS compensation arrangements have created challenges, inequity and inconsistent service provision. We will keep pressing for a strategic, well-aligned approach. Work is underway with AHS and new committees have been struck for the on-call review and to take a broader approach to stipends and other compensation matters.

We are committed to all these efforts. Success will improve our ability to retain and attract physicians and learners. If you have questions related to stipend support or any issues of AHS compensation, please email: stipendsupport@albertadoctors.org.

You are always welcome to share your thoughts with me. You can email me via president@albertadoctors.org. You can also comment on this letter on the AMA website.


fred Rinaldi, MD, CCFP, FCFP, LLB, MBA, MPA(HSA), BCom
President, Alberta Medical Association

"Fate whispers to the warrior, 'You can not withstand the storm.' The warrior whispers back, 'I am the storm.'"

1 comment

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  • #1

    David Smyth


    9:57 AM on April 07, 2023

    You are embarrassing yourself with the suggestion that it is now AHS and new committees that will fix something that the AMA was supposed to fix 10 years ago. We now have hospitalists and ER docs getting FFS and stipends with no continuity of care paying zero overhead while family doctors are paying their own way and dealing with angry Albertans that can’t get timely care. I would not want choose office family medicine again. I see doctors leaving office practise due to the hassles and pay inequity. The AMA is a failed organization. The warrior is dead.

Alberta Medical Association Mission: Advocate for and support Alberta physicians. Strengthen their leadership in the provision of sustainable quality care.