Dr. Kathleen Ross takes over as president of the Canadian Medical Association

Press Release

August 16, 2023

Dr. Kathleen Ross, a family physician in Coquitlam and New Westminster, BC, is the new president of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA). Dr. Ross practises as a family physician while also providing obstetrics and surgical assistance in cardiovascular surgery at the Royal Columbian Hospital (RCH).

Dr. Ross is assuming the role of president at a time when family medicine is in crisis. Her direct experience in front-line medicine will prove significant as the CMA continues to advance solutions to help solve access to care issues confronting Canadians. Recognizing that primary care is foundational to a well-functioning health care system, Dr. Ross is firmly committed to working with policy makers and the medical community to bring team-based care to the forefront of solutions needed now and in the future.

“With the increasing numbers of challenges and disruptions that have evolved to crisis levels over the last few years, the Canadian medical profession finds itself at a crossroads. Important discussions about health care in Canada are underway now, and we must keep the conversation moving to ensure we improve access to care for patients and create better work environments for health workers,” says Dr. Ross.

As a founding member of Doctors of BC’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group in 2018 and physician lead for RCH’s Antiracism and Unconscious Bias Working Group in 2021, Dr. Ross remains committed to fostering learning, awareness, education, and ongoing implementation of inclusive, diverse and antiracist practices in health care.

Dr. Joss Reimer becomes president-elect

Dr. Joss Reimer is the new president-elect for 2023–24. She will serve in that position until May 2024, when she will become president. Dr. Reimer is currently the chief medical officer for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

Dr. Alika Lafontaine completes his presidency

Dr. Alika Lafontaine has completed his term as president after a year spent advocating for physicians throughout the country and for the rebuilding of Canada’s health care systems.

“Meaningful change can only occur with a break from the status quo,” says Dr. Lafontaine. “It has been an honour to serve as president of the CMA during a year where several status quos were broken. Governments across the country are collaborating again, pushed together by the crises our health systems across Canada are now facing. We can truly transform our health care systems if we continue to make meaningful changes to the way we approach providing care. Let’s continue with meaningful change that will stabilize access to care for patients and improve working environments for health care workers.”

Dr. Lafontaine will sit as past president until August 2024.

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