More than 1,700 participants from hundreds of municipalities and organizations from across Ontario are participating in the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) 2022 AMO Conference which kicked off on Sunday, Aug. 14 and runs until Wednesday, Aug. 17 at the Westin Hotel in downtown Ottawa.
The top educational forum for municipal governments, the 2022 AMO Conference is the first time municipal leaders will gather together, face-to-face, in almost three years. It is an opportunity for municipal officials to work directly with the newly elected Ontario government as it begins its new mandate. This year’s event features more than 60 speakers, sessions and workshops, reflecting the broad scope of municipal responsibilities. Keynote presenters include:
- Ontario Premier Doug Ford
- Ontario Deputy Minister of Health Sylvia Jones
- Ontario Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Steve Clark
- Peter Tabuns, Interim Leader of the Ontario New Democratic Party
- Stephen Blais, Member of Provincial Parliament for Orléans and Ontario Liberal Caucus Critic for Municipal Affairs and Housing
- Mike Schreiner, Leader of the Green Party of Ontario
- Jamie McGarvey, AMO president
The healthcare system, homelessness, housing affordability, infrastructure and transportation will all be among the many topics covered.
Dr. Rose Zacharias, president of the Ontario Medical Association (OMA), is taking part in the conference, and told The Sam Laprade Show on Aug. 15 it's an opportunity to have conversations with members from different levels of government regarding the state of the healthcare system across the province of Ontario.
"We are dealing with a backlog of patient care services," she said. "We are seeing emergency departments overrun and burnout my healthcare professionals. We know there is a crisis."
Dr. Zacharias is eager to discuss the OMA's five point plan to help improve the province's healthcare system.
The plan includes:
- Reducing wait times and the backlog of services
- Expanding mental health and addiction services in the community
- Improving and expand home care and other community care
- Strengthening public health and pandemic preparedness
- Giving every patient a team of health-care providers and link them digitally
Dr. Zacharias said the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed gaps in the healthcare system, which existed long before the onset of COVID-19.
"We are inside a system that has been broken for awhile," she added.
Dr. Kwadwo Kyeremanteng, a critical care physician at the Ottawa Hospital. told The Sam Laprade Show on Aug. 16 that he hasn't seen the situation in hospitals the way it is now.
"If you come to the hospital you will get the care, especially in urgent situations," he said. "But the system is under strain."
Listen to the full interview with Dr. Kwadwo Kyeremanteng below:
Listen to the full interview with Dr. Rose Zacharias below: