News Releases
Government Home Search Sitemap Contact Us  

Executive Council
Health and Community Services
November 5, 2010

Provincial Government Responds to Resignation of 13 Salaried Specialists

The Honourable Jerome Kennedy, Minister of Health and Community Services, and the Honourable Tom Marshall, Minister of Finance and President of Treasury Board, today responded to the resignation of 13 salaried specialists in the province.

"It is very unfortunate that 13 of the province's 212 salaried specialists have tendered their resignations," said Minister Kennedy. "With the offer currently on the table, these specialists would receive a raise of $60,000. In order to ensure continuity of care for patients in our province, I will be instructing the Regional Health Authorities to begin recruitment immediately to fill these positions."

"Through government's current offer for the province's physicians, salaried specialists are being offered a 31 per cent increase to their salaries, which is a very generous offer that brings them to 98 per cent parity with their Atlantic counterparts," said Minister Marshall. "Government's offer clearly demonstrates that we are committed to working toward a reasonable and responsible agreement while ensuring that it is sustainable and in the long-term interest of all Newfoundlanders and Labradorians."

The Provincial Government has put forward an offer worth an additional $81 million to the 1,075 physicians in the province. This offer represents an approximate 25 per cent increase to the physician services base budget, bringing the total annual compensation package to approximately $410 million. This generous offer adds to significant investments already being made by the Williams Government in the province's health care sector, with a record investment of $2.7 billion in Budget 2010: The Right Investments - For Our Children and Our Future . Healthcare spending by the Provincial Government has increased by over $1 billion in the past 10 years.

"The average salary of salaried specialists, besides oncologists and pathologists, is approximately $200,000 plus an extra two weeks vacation that salaried specialists in the Maritime provinces do not receive," said Minister Kennedy. "The current offer would increase that average salary amount to $260,000."

Last week, Minister Marshall provided a detailed response to a number of questions the NLMA recently posed regarding the Provincial Government's offer.

"I responded in great detail to an extensive list of questions that the NLMA recently sent us," said Minister Marshall. "The doctors now have the answers they were seeking and, as they have indicated, they plan to present the offer to the membership shortly. It is indeed disappointing that this group of specialists has chosen to take this action now."

There are more physicians employed in the province than ever before. Since 2003, there has been an 18 per cent increase in the number of physicians practicing in Newfoundland and Labrador, representing 161 new doctors working in the province. Since 2004, the Provincial Government has awarded 299 bursaries, each with a one-year return-in-service commitment, to 177 Memorial University medical school applicants. This represents an investment of almost $7 million. Included in the graduating groups this year will be 28 physicians who have bursaries with the Provincial Government and return-in-service commitments.

Additionally, in 2009, 14 of 17 family practice residents who commenced practice were recruited, all with bursaries and return-in-service commitments. Last year, 17 of 25 specialty residents who commenced practice were also recruited, nine of whom had bursaries with return-in-service commitments.

"During my time as the Minister of Health and Community Services, I have had the opportunity to speak personally with a number of our province's physicians," said Minister Kennedy. "While I am disappointed with the resignation today of 13 of the province's salaried specialists, this does not take away from the hard working, caring individuals who are committed to their patients and to improving the health care system."

- 30 -

Media contacts:

Mark King
Director of Communications
Department of Finance, Public Service Secretariat
709-729-6830, 699-3454
Tansy Mundon
Director of Communications
Department of Health and Community
709-729-1377, 685-2646

2010 11 05                                                    1:50 p.m.

SearchHomeBack to GovernmentContact Us

All material copyright the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. No unauthorized copying or redeployment permitted. The Government assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of any material deployed on an unauthorized server.
Disclaimer/Copyright/Privacy Statement