The Board of Governors of McGill University and the Board of Directors of the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) have passed identical resolutions calling on the Government of Quebec to put access to quality care at the forefront of discussions on complementarity and to honour its commitments regarding the management of the MUHC Redevelopment Project.
"We are sending a clear message to the Quebec government that the integration of teaching, research and patient care for children and adults lies at the heart of our mission and that we will not compromise on our raison d'être," noted Robert Rabinovitch, Chair of the McGill University Board of Governors. "About one in four Quebecers, from Nunavik to Montreal, rely on us for specialized and highly specialized care," added David Culver, Chair of the Board of Directors of the MUHC. "We must have the capacity to grow and innovate to effectively meet their evolving needs."
The resolution resolves that McGill University and the MUHC will be guided by the following principles in discussions with the government:
- As a university teaching hospital network, we will continue to develop academic programs of the highest calibre, comprised of world-class teaching and research integrated with quality clinical care.
- We support complementarity wherein it is defined as the shared responsibility and management of one or several clinical programs among institutions in order to improve the quality of care offered, increase efficiency and improve teaching and research programs. We are committed to continue to work closely with our colleagues at the CHUM and Ste. Justine and believe that complementarity should be developed by health professionals in the teaching hospitals rather than imposed as a top-down bureaucratic process. We will not accept any ministry-imposed re-engineering measures that infringe on the ability of McGill, the MUHC and the Children's to provide the highest quality patient care, or that undermine the ability to ensure the highest quality teaching and research programs. In this context, we will not agree to forced mergers, to cap or dismantle services, or to limit our activity to "current levels" as proposed by the Ministry, or to any other proposal that would undermine quality, suffocate development and make it impossible to recruit and retain the most talented professionals.
- Academic freedom lies at the core of excellence and quality and will at all times be safeguarded and protected. Patient care, teaching and research programs are integral to our mission and comprise a whole within the McGill University hospital teaching network.
- As the minister clearly confirmed in his letter dated July 21, 2003 (attached), the MUHC is maître-d'oeuvre of its redevelopment project, and as such the MUHC must be able to develop and manage this project, including selecting the project manager, master architect and engineer. This will be done through an appropriate structure that ensures transparency and accountability to government and other partners. As an integral part of the McGill teaching hospital network, the MUHC is committed to bringing this project in on budget and to ensuring the highest quality of academic medicine and patient care for the population of Quebec.
- We will not compromise our capacity to excel, innovate and grow to serve the many patients who depend on us.
McGill University and the MUHC have launched a multi-faceted campaign to promote their position. The institutions have, for example, sponsored an advertising campaign in major Montreal daily newspapers and an email petition, which was signed by more than 2,000 Quebecers over the weekend.
Each year, the MUHC receives over 800,000 ambulatory visits and cares for 37,000 in-patients. The Research Institute of the MUHC obtains some $100M in external research funding annually and publishes over 1,400 peer-reviewed research studies that contribute to McGill's standing as a leading research university. Each year, some 825 residents and 450 medical students, over 1,000 nurses and 525 allied-health students train at the MUHC.
The Times Higher Education Supplement has just ranked McGill the only Canadian university in the world's top 25, for the second year in a row. McGill is ranked in the number one position in Canada in the Maclean's ranking of medical-doctoral universities, with the University of Toronto, and McGill has been named again this year as Canada's leading research university.
To read the resolution please see Resolution.