Alberta's Health Minister is expanding the role of the province's Chief Medical Officer of Health.

The Minister of Health and Wellness announced a new model to give more power to the province's top doctor on Monday.

Health Minister Ron Liepert says the change will streamline the position and improve access to services across the province.

Alberta's Acting Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Gerry Predy, will report directly to the Health Minister now and will also have the authority to act in the event of a public health emergency.

The new model has Alberta Health and Wellness and Alberta Health Services working together over the next several months to define the frame work to best support the delivery of health services in the province.

The new model includes the following roles and responsibilities to strengthen public health policy and services:

Alberta Health and Wellness:

- Provide provincial leadership

- Develop provincial public health policy, standards and legislation

- Establish provincial accountability measures and monitor performance

- Continue provincial surveillance and reporting

- Support inter-provincial and Government of Alberta activities

- Lead provincial planning and strategy development

- Provide funding

Alberta Health Services:

- Implement provincial policies

- Develop strategies to support the six core public health functions

- Co-ordinate, resource and deliver public health services

- Conduct local community assessments, surveillance and health status assessment

- Plan, evaluate and report on strategies and activities

Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH):

- Advise the Minister and, as required, Cabinet directly on matters pertaining to the Public Health Act and matters relating to the health of the population

- Participate as a member of the Alberta Health and Wellness executive committee

- Act as a liaison between the government and Alberta Health Services, medical officers of health and executive officers in the administration of the Public Health Act

- Expand and broaden the current focus on communicable disease to include a chronic disease and injury and population health focus

- Increase liaison with other ministries on issues pertaining to the health of Albertans

- Provide regular reports to the Minister on the health status of the population

The changes came out of recommendations made by public health professionals at a workshop that was held in Edmonton recently.