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The Ontario Wait Time Strategy: No Evidence of an Adverse Impact on Other Surgeries


In the fall of 2004, Canada’s First Ministers announced plans to implement a national wait time strategy (WTS). As a result, there has been a clear increase in the rate of WTS procedures. However, at the same time, there have also been anecdotal reports of decreased numbers of, and increased waits for, nonpriority services. This report assesses the impact of the Ontario WTS upon various procedures both within and beyond the WTS priority areas. Trends in physician billings from 1992 to 2006 were analyzed for a range of surgical procedures—including orthopedic, ophthalmology and other high-volume surgeries—to determine whether the announcement of the WTS had any effect on the rates of these procedures.



Paterson JM, Hux JE, Tu JV, Laupacis A. May 2007

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