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Introduction

On March 24 and 25, 2011, 153 people gathered in Ottawa for the eighth annual Taming of the Queue conference. By all accounts, the past seven national invitational conferences have been a great success, bringing together a community of interest from across the country to discuss access and wait time issues from a range of perspectives. These gatherings have contributed to enhancing knowledge about the issue, exchanging best practices, and helping shape the public policy agenda. Like its predecessors, this conference was designed to bring together diverse perspectives on access to health services.

Titled “Turning Ideas into Action”, the 2011 conference presentations and discussions focused on two areas:

  1. Delivery of health services to people in non-urban areas; and
  2. The continuing care component of the health system.

The conference was chaired by Bonnie Brossart, Saskatchewan Health Quality Council, and Dr. Ernst Schuster, Family Physician and Clinical Professor at the University of Alberta, Department of Family Medicine.

In their introductory remarks, the chairs stated that the Taming of the Queue series of conferences have facilitated the sharing and replication of innovative and leading practices on reducing wait times for health services.

They reviewed the 2011 conference program (PDF), highlighting two new features: poster exhibits and small group discussions.

The chairs also welcomed the involvement of students in the event for the first time. It was noted that every province and territory in Canada, with the exception of the Northwest Territories, was represented at this year’s conference.

Dr. Schuster advised that both the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and the College of Family Physicians of Canada recognize participation in the Taming of the Queue conference as continuing medical education.

The contributors to the 2011 Taming of the Queue conference were also acknowledged.

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