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Some Canadian patients are waiting longer for medical treatments and surgeries, according to a report released Tuesday.
The fifth annual report from the Wait Time Alliance, a partnership of physicians groups across Canada, scored Prince Edward Island and Manitoba as the worst for wait times in the country, while Ontario came out on top.
"Although some provinces have shown improvement, the overall results point toward lengthier wait times for Canadians," the report said.
The report grades provinces on wait times for procedures outlined as priorities by federal and provincial governments in the 2004 Health Accord, including joint replacement, diagnostic imaging, cataract surgery, cancer treatment and heart surgery. It scores the provinces by comparing actual wait times to provincial targets and its own ideal benchmarks.
Ontario got an "A" grade overall, while P.E.I. got an "F" and Manitoba got a "D" for knee replacements.
In those provinces, the report card said less than half of the patients who needed knee replacements got them before 26 weeks.
"After making progress in recent years, at least against government benchmarks, it now appears some provinces are being left behind in the battle to reduce the time patients wait for health care," Dr. Chris Simpson, a cardiologist in Kingston, Ont., and chair of the alliance, said in a statement.
The group is calling for a national effort to minimize wait times and improvements to publicly reported wait times.
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