News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

March 24, 2023

Manitoba Government Announces Members of Joint Task Force to Reduce Administrative Burdens on Physicians

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Partnership with Doctors Manitoba to Improve Patient Care: Gordon

The Manitoba government is welcoming appointees to a joint task force focused on reducing administrative burdens on physicians, recognizing this work will help ensure doctors have more time to provide care for patients and help to reduce physician burnout, Health Minister Audrey Gordon announced today.

“It is an honour to welcome the newly appointed members of the joint task force who were selected for this important initiative based on their expertise and leadership,” said Gordon. “The group will start work immediately to identify opportunities, provide efficiencies and make recommendations to reduce excessive and unnecessary administrative tasks currently undertaken by physicians.”

The initiative has been developed in partnership with Doctors Manitoba and was first announced during Red Tape Awareness Week in February.

“We are pleased to see the task force appointed so it can begin its important work,” said Dr. Candace Bradshaw, president, Doctors Manitoba. “It’s estimated Manitoba physicians spend nearly 600,000 hours on unnecessary administrative tasks annually, a heavy burden that not only diverts doctors away from patient care, but is also a top contributor to physician burnout. We appreciate the Manitoba government taking action on this important issue.”

The joint task force includes two co-chairs, one appointed by the Manitoba government and one by Doctors Manitoba:

  • Paul Pierlot, appointed by Manitoba Health, is a seasoned public-sector leader with extensive experience leading red tape reduction and regulatory modernization initiatives in government and inter-jurisdictionally; and
  • Keir Johnson, appointed by Doctors Manitoba, is the organization’s lead for strategy, communications and physician engagement, with a background in health services research, analytics and evaluation.

The joint task force also includes:

  • Dr. Randy Guzman, hospital-based specialist and vascular surgeon based at St. Boniface Hospital, appointed by Doctors Manitoba;
  • Dr. Alexis Botkin, community-based specialist and dermatologist based in Winnipeg, appointed by Doctors Manitoba;
  • Dr. Ian Alexander, a rural family physician and former president of the Manitoba College of Family Physicians, appointed by Doctors Manitoba;
  • Dr. Shawn Thomas, physician leader and regional medical specialty lead (primary health care, home care and community integration) with Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, appointed by Manitoba Health;
  • Dan Skwarchuk, health system leader and regional lead, corporate services and chief financial officer, Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, appointed by Manitoba Health; and
  • Laura Jones, executive vice-president and chief strategic officer, Canadian Federation of Independent Business, with specialized experience in red tape reduction.

The joint task force will report to the minister and Dr. Bradshaw and will be supported by staff from the Manitoba government and Doctors Manitoba. Doctors Manitoba will play a primary role in leading physician engagement to ensure planning and implementation are guided by physicians’ experience and advice.

A public report from the joint task force is expected to be released by the end of this year, the minister noted, adding that the task force will also be working to prioritize improvements to administrative tasks that will have a positive impact on physicians in the short term.

The joint task force is one of the initiatives set out under the retention pillar of the Manitoba government’s $200-million Health Human Resource Action Plan announced in November 2022.

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