Rural Canadians have significantly less access to doctors than Canadians in urban settings.
A re-elected Liberal government will:
- Expand the number of family doctors and primary health teams in rural communities, by increasing by 50% (from $40,000 up to $60,000 over 5 years), the maximum debt relief that family doctors, residents in family medicine, nurse practitioners, or nurses are eligible for the under Canada Student Loans forgiveness program.
- Expand the list of professionals eligible for forgiveness to include dentists, pharmacists, dental hygienists, midwives, social workers, psychologists, teachers, and early childhood educators so that rural communities have greater access to the full suite of health and social service providers they need.
- Offer health care professionals, who are just starting out in their careers, a one-time income tax deduction of up to $15,000 over their first 3 years of practice to help with the costs of setting up a practice.
- Undertake a review to ensure that communities that are indeed rural are fully eligible under the program.