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New Brunswick agrees
physicians pay plan

August 9 2005 - The Province of New Brunswick has approved a new three and a half year compensation schedule for salaried physicians through the Medical Pay Plan, following consultations with the New Brunswick Medical Society. The new agreement covers the period from Oct. 1, 2004, to March 31, 2008.

Health and Wellness Minister Elvy Robichaud said:

"The Medical Pay Plan is the salary scale through which New Brunswick's approximately 250 salaried physicians are remunerated and it also oversees other work-related issues. This agreement represents a salary increase of 20.5 per cent for general practice physicians and 18.5 per cent for all other specialties for the duration of this agreement."

"We are pleased that our discussions have resulted in improvements to the compensation and benefits provisions for salaried physicians that will greatly assist in our continuing recruitment and retention efforts," said Dr. Lyle Weston, president of the New Brunswick Medical Society.

As well as the wage increases, the review also covers a number of other items including:

  • The ability for salaried physicians to bill fee-for-service for work done after hours while on call
  • Increased financial credits for continuing medical education
  • Fee increases for autopsies; and
  • Additional vacation entitlement

The salaried physician model of remuneration is utilized for general practitioners who mainly work out of Community Health Centres (CHC) and collaborative practices. Salaried specialists normally provide hospital-based services.

"Physicians are a vital part of our health system, and the ability to recruit and retain physicians is a vital component in achieving the goals set out in our Provincial Health Plan, Healthy Futures," the minister said. "This agreement will help us attract and keep these skilled and dedicated health professionals by making New Brunswick competitive with other Atlantic provinces."

According to Robichaud, the net number of physicians working in New Brunswick has increased by 177 since June 1999.

Under the new schedule for salaried physicians, the Province will invest a cumulative total of $13.7 million over the next three years and a half to cover the cost of the increase and other incentives included in the agreement. Partners in the consultative process to review the Medical Pay Plan included representatives of the Department of Health and Wellness, the Office of Human Resources, the New Brunswick Medical Society and the Regional Health Authorities.

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