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Healthcare 101

Healthcare Basics for Albertans

​​Healthcare Basics in Alberta

Have you ever had a problem using the healthcare system? Maybe you’ve had trouble finding a family doctor or didn’t know where to go if you needed to set up homecare for a family member or friend.

We wanted to know what matters most to the people of Alberta. So, we asked Albertans like you what you wanted to know about our healthcare system. You told us you wanted to learn more about healthcare basics – the government and non-government organizations, services and resources that provide healthcare.

You also wanted to know​ about finding my way through the healthcare system. Who do I call when I need help? Where do I go?

Albertans also told us that they wanted to learn about being my own advocate and what are my rights as a person using the healthcare system.

Healthcare in Alberta is made up of many different partners, services, and resources. They work together to provide healthcare services and care to Albertans.


Healthcare partners include doctors, nurses, pharmacists, physiotherapists, dentists, health researc​hers at universities, and non-profit organizations that raise money or provide services for people with different kinds of health issues. Some partners are linked to the provincial government and some are not.​​

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partners of the healthcare system in Alberta 


Alberta Health Services provides most of the health services paid for by the Government of Alberta. There are other public services that include visits to your doctor and most medical tests. You have to pay for some healthcare services that the provincial government doesn’t provide. These are private services that include visits to the dentist or physiotherapist and sick notes or forms filled out by your doctor. Some people have private insurance plans through their work or that they buy on their own to cover all or part of the cost of private services.

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public servicesprivate services 



Healthcare partners and services provide healthcare resources. There are many types of healthcare resources such as those that provide health information, health advice, or help you find health services. Sometimes you need healthcare resources in a hurry, like 911 or 811, or you may want information about a certain health topic.​

If you have an emergency and need help right away, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Department or Urgent Care Centre. If you’re not sure what to do or need some health advice, call 811 day or night to speak to a Registered Nurse. You can find information on many different health topics on​​​​​

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