This year’s median wait is almost three times longer than the wait recorded in the first national survey in 1993.
waiting for health care
In 2021, the median wait in Alberta between seeing a general practitioner and receiving treatment was 32.1 weeks.
The province's median wait time was about three months longer than the Canadian average.
Canada only had 2.0 acute care beds per 1,000 population, ranking 25th out of the 26 countries.
The provincial government contracted several private surgical clinics to help clear the backlog.
In 2020, patients in New Brunswick faced a median 41.3 week wait for medically necessary treatment.
Waiting has become a defining characteristic of the Canadian health care experience. Patients stricken with illness, from mild to serious, must wait their turn for access to emergency care, family doctors, medical specialists, diagnostic scans, and treatment.
These delays, which can be quite substantial, impose needless costs on Canadians in terms of their economic, social, and mental well-being and can lead to less-desirable health care outcomes. Fortunately, this serious health care problem can be readily solved through policy reforms based on European successes.