Demand pushes MRI wait up to a year (Canada)


Waits for MRI scans in Ontario - used to diagnose multiple sclerosis, cancer, and chronic back pain - are startlingly long, with at least one hospital reporting a queue of almost one year.

The province's targeted waiting time for the lowest priority scan - such as those with chronic back or knee pain - is 28 days. But the waiting time is 100 days, which means 90 per cent of all patients receive their scan within that time period, with the remaining 10 per cent waiting longer.

The range in waits throughout the province is dramatic: At Bluewater Health in Sarnia, Ont., 90 per cent of patients had their scans done within 17 days. At The Ottawa Hospital, which has the longest waiting times, that number is 360.

This is according to data from October to December, 2008, the latest available.

source: Globe and Mail

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