British Columbians wait longer for cataract surgery and joint replacements; waits improve for hip fracture repairs

OTTAWA, March 28, 2017 /CNW/ - The Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) has released its annual report on wait times for specific priority procedures across the country. The report found the following for British Columbia in 2016:

  • Fewer patients received hip replacement surgery within the benchmark time frame. In 2016, 61% of patients who needed a hip replacement received it within the benchmark, down from 80% in 2012.
  • British Columbians who need knee replacement surgery are waiting longer. In 2016, 47% of people who needed a knee replacement received their surgery within the medically accepted wait time, compared with 74% of people in 2012.
  • More patients waited longer for cataract surgery. Last year, 66% of people received cataract surgery within the benchmark, compared with 85% in 2012.
  • For hip fracture repair, 86% of people who needed surgery received it within the benchmark of 48 hours. This was an improvement from 81% in 2012.
  • Most patients (91%) started their radiation therapy within the 28-day benchmark.

The table below compares the B.C. and national numbers. A higher percentage means that more people had their procedures done within the medically acceptable time frame.

 

Procedure

Benchmark: The amount of
time that clinical evidence
shows is appropriate to
wait for a procedure

Percentage meeting
benchmark in B.C.

Percentage meeting
benchmark in Canada

2012

2016

2012

2016

Hip replacement

182 days

80

61

81

79

Knee replacement

182 days

74

47

76

73

Cataract surgery

112 days

85

66

83

73

Hip fracture repair

48 hours

81

86

81

86

Radiation therapy

28 days

94

91

97

97


Note

For information on wait time definitions and exceptions, please visit the Wait Times tool.

 

Wait Times for Priority Procedures in Canada, 2017 also includes information on wait times for diagnostic imaging and cancer surgery. Data on trends from 2008 to 2016 — organized by province, health region and procedure — is available in CIHI's online Wait Times tool. The Wait Times tool also provides an explanation of how wait times are calculated for each priority procedure.

Quote

This report adds to the wait time discussion in Canada, showing that most patients nationally have priority area procedures within recommended time frames. However, we continue to see variability in wait times across provinces and procedures. We hope that this information will help pinpoint areas of focus for improvement.

Kathleen Morris, Vice President, Research and Analysis, CIHI

About CIHI

The Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) is an independent, not-for-profit organization that provides essential information on Canada's health systems and the health of Canadians.

We provide comparable and actionable data and information that are used to accelerate improvements in health care, health system performance and population health across Canada. Our stakeholders use our broad range of health system databases, measurements and standards, together with our evidence-based reports and analyses, in their decision-making processes. We protect the privacy of Canadians by ensuring the confidentiality and integrity of the health care information we provide.

 

SOURCE Canadian Institute for Health Information

For further information: Media contact, media@cihi.ca; Julie Bortolotti, 613-694-6654

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