Greater than 700,000 Quebecers are ready to see a medical specialist: Well being Ministry

The ready record for an appointment with a medical specialist in Quebec has elevated by practically 50 per cent for the reason that begin of the pandemic, Radio-Canada is reporting.

Sufferers can anticipate to attend 12 months on common to see a specialist, in accordance with knowledge from the Ministry of Well being and Social Providers (MSSS) obtained by Radio-Canada.

Based mostly on knowledge from the MSSS, the ready record on the Middle de répartition des calls for de service (CRDS), which directs sufferers to specialists of their area, exceeded 720,000 requests in Might, a peak for the reason that begin of the pandemic.

Extra sufferers are being pressured to attend longer than they might have 20 months in the past, whether or not they wish to see a dermatologist, an allergist-immunologist, a gynecologist or a gastroenterologist.

For all specialties, the common await an appointment was near 9 months in September 2020. It now exceeds 12 months, and for ophthalmology, the wait is nearer to 2 years.

A doctor wearing a stethoscope is sitting in a hospital room.
Dr. Sylvain Dion is the primary vice-president of the Federation of Common Practitioners of Quebec. (Radio-Canada)

Dr. Sylvain Dion, first vice-president of the Federation of Common Practitioners of Quebec (FMOQ), says this example is untenable.

“We will all the time dwell with three to 6 months [of waiting] however at 12 months, it is actually gone too far,” he mentioned. “The affected person will come again to see us a number of instances in the course of the 12 months to speak to us a few well being downside for which we have already reached our restrict.”

Quebec has practically 11,000 medical specialists and barely fewer normal practitioners.

“When the federal government asks household docs to see their sufferers inside 72 hours whereas I am informed the wait time is 12 months [to request a specialist for a health issue]it is virtually a double commonplace,” Dion mentioned

Dr. Serge Legault, vice-president of the Federation of Medical Specialists of Quebec (FMSQ), says he believes as much as 12 per cent of the CRDS ready record for surgical procedures alone include duplicate requests. Contemplating different methods of offering medical consultations might assist alleviate the backlog, he mentioned.

“In gastroenterology or hematology, for instance, merely giving recommendation over the telephone or electronically might substitute [in-person] session and keep away from a protracted await the affected person,” Legault mentioned.

In a current interview from the medical journal Career Santé, a senior MSSS formally acknowledged that there was a lot progress to be made on the CRDS, notably with respect to know-how.

Radio-Canada’s sources say Quebec and the 2 medical federations are growing a serious plan to enhance the functioning of the referral system to medical specialists.