NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


November 2, 2007

Canada has the worst rating in a new study of health care in seven countries when it comes to wait times for seeing doctors and getting elective surgery, according to the Commonwealth Fund.

According to the Fund:

  • Only 22 percent of Canadians surveyed say they could get a same-day appointment when they're sick.
  • 30 percent -- by far the highest among the countries -- say they had to wait six days or more.
  • Some 15 percent reported waits of six months or more for non-emergency surgery.
  • Two-thirds reported having a lot of difficulty getting care at night, on weekends or holidays.

According to the fund, 60 percent of Canadians think their system needs fundamental changes; 12 percent said it should be rebuilt completely.

Source: "Canada rates worst on health-care waiting times among 7 countries," Canadian Press, November 1, 2007; based upon: Cathy Schoen et al., "Toward Higher-Performance Health Systems: Adults' Health Care Experiences in Seven Countries, 2007," Commonwealth Fund, Vol. 92, November 1, 2007.

For survey: 


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