Physician assistants have been helpful in other parts of Canada and the world, and the provincial government is looking at installing them here.
The Medical Professional Amendment Act was introduced at the legislature and it will help bring these assistants into the province’s healthcare system, was introduced Thursday at the legislature.
Bryan Salte, the legal counsel with the Saskatchewan College of Physicians and Surgeons, thinks this is a good step.
“The hope is that we will be in a position to start licensing them fairly soon,” Salte said. “The next graduating class is graduating fairly quickly to try to recruit physician assistants in places where they can help with health care.”
The legislation will see $13 million dollars and 12 physician assistant positions being created across Saskatchewan. Salte said the college was part of the consultation process.
“We had this discussion with the ministry some time ago and have been fully supportive of the ministry’s efforts to introduce legislation that would allow for the license or position of physician assistants.”
In other parts of the country, physician assistants are used long term care, primary care and emergency medicine – often conducting patient exams, prescribing medications, and interpreting tests.