Prioritize disadvantaged people for primary care and screening access: doctors

Prioritize the disadvantaged

A group of Canadian doctors, nurses and other health-care providers has issued recommendations on how to make health care more equitable for disadvantaged people.

In a report published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal today, the group says people who are marginalized should be prioritized for access to a primary care provider.

Lead author and St. Michael's Hospital physician Dr. Nav Persaud says getting a family doctor or nurse practitioner should be automatic.

He compares the right to have a primary care provider to a child's right to go to school.

Persaud says many people who are racialized, identify as LGBTQ or have low incomes face barriers to important screenings that can save lives and reduce illness.

The report recommends proactive prevention and screening measures for certain cancers, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, depression, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis.

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