Health Council of Canada releases 2012 Commonwealth Fund International Health Policy Survey results
TORONTO, Jan. 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Today, the Health Council of Canada
released results from the 2012 Commonwealth Fund International Health Policy Survey. As part of our Health Care Matters Series, How do Canadian primary care physicians rate the health system? examines physicians' perspectives on the performance of the health care
The survey results show wide variation in how Canada's provincial health
systems perform. Internationally, even the best performing regions in
Canada rank below top performing countries in most categories.
A key finding of the survey is that the adoption of electronic medical
records has more than doubled nationally since 2006, with over half
(57%) of primary care physicians now using computerized patient charts.
However, this number varies widely across provinces (from 26% in New
Brunswick to 74% in Alberta), and overall we still rank second last
among the 10 countries surveyed.
The number of physicians routinely using electronic prescribing has also
improved, from 20% in 2006 to 43% today, and we rank third last among
the 10 countries surveyed.
"The use of information technology facilitates better communication with
patients, improve safety and quality, and better coordinate care," says
John G. Abbott, CEO, Health Council of Canada "While there has been
significant progress across the country, we're not where we need to
Other areas of the survey showed continuing gaps in the system - like
the 26% of physicians who say their patients often have difficulty
paying out-of-pocket health costs (such as medication), similar to the
25% in 2006. However, this too varies across provinces, with more than
40% of patients in the Atlantic provinces struggling to afford the care
they need. From a national perspective, Canada shows no improvement in
any areas of access to care that we could track since 2006.
"We hope that our comparative findings help shed light on potential for
improvement across the country in these areas," says Dr. Michael
Moffatt, Councillor, Health Council of Canada. "Primary health care is
an important part of our health system, and the most logical place to
The bulletin provides provincial and international comparisons of
primary care physicians' responses based on their experiences with
access to care, coordination of care, use of information technology,
and practice improvement and incentives. It also provides results over
time, comparing findings from 2006 to 2012.
To read the full report, visit www.healthcouncilcanada.ca/healthcarematters7.
About the Health Council of Canada
Created by the 2003 First Ministers' Accord on Health Care Renewal, the
Health Council of Canada is an independent national agency that reports
on the progress of health care renewal. The Council provides a system
wide perspective on health care reform in Canada, and disseminates
information on innovative practices across the country. The Councillors
are appointed by the participating provincial and territorial
governments and the Government of Canada.
About the Survey
The 2012 Commonwealth Fund International Health Policy Survey of Primary
Care Doctors reflects the perceptions of a sample of 2,124 primary care doctors
across Canada, and a total of almost 10,000 physicians across 10
countries: Australia, Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, New
Zealand, Norway, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United
States. The Health Council of Canada was a key contributor to the
design and funding of this survey. The expanded sampling for the 2012
survey in Canada was supported by the Health Council of Canada, the
Alberta Health Quality Council, Health Quality Ontario, Commissaire à
la santé et au bien-être du Québec, and Canada Health Infoway.
Image with caption: "How do Canadian primary care physicians rate the health system? (CNW Group/Health Council of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130121_C6865_PHOTO_EN_22681.jpg
Image with caption: "Infographic (CNW Group/Health Council of Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20130121_C6865_PHOTO_EN_22683.jpg
SOURCE: Health Council of Canada
For further information:
For more information or to arrange an interview please contact:
Yeena Peng, Media Relations, Health Council of Canada, firstname.lastname@example.org, O: 416-480-7100, C: 416-407-2635