October 31, 2014
ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ

 Health Home >>  >>   

Quebec doctors work less than their Ontario counterparts, study finds

Written by: QMI Agency
May. 27, 2014

(Fotolia)


MONTREAL — Quebec doctors take more vacations and work fewer hours than their counterparts in the rest of Canada, says a Toronto think-tank.

The C.D. Howe Institute says its findings partly explain the province's long ER waits and the thousands of Quebecers who don't have a family doctor.

Study author Claude E. Forget notes that Quebec actually has more doctors per 100,000 people than the Canadian average. However, 15% of Quebec patients surveyed don't have family physicians, compared with 4% of Ontarians.

Ad
Meanwhile, Quebec doctors spend an average of 34.9 hours per week in primary care work, far below the 43 weekly hours per Ontario physician.

"This relatively small number of hours doctors spend with their patients ... has a direct link with the fewer number of patients they serve," wrote Forget, a former Quebec cabinet minister.

"There are, on average, 1,081 patients per doctor in Quebec, 1,539 in Ontario and 1,468 across Canada."

He says Quebec doctors tend to work fewer hours whenever the government increases the amount that physicians can bill medicare for each patient.

"Gradually they're accustomed to working less, to have a lifestyle that appeals to them more," said Forget.

He suggests Quebec change its billing method so doctors bill for each patient.

"If family physicians were paid ... a predetermined lump sum for each patient in their care, they would be encouraged to sign up a larger number of patients," said Forget.

NUMBER OF WEEKLY WORKING HOURS BY PRIMARY-CARE DOCTORS, BY PROVINCE

  • Man/Sask. - 49.5
  • B.C. - 47.6
  • Alta. - 46.7
  • Atlantic - 45.2
  • Ont. - 43
  • Que. - 34.9
  • National avg. - 42.1

AVERAGE NUMBER OF PATIENTS, PER DOCTOR

  • Man/Sask. - 1,750
  • Alta. - 1,672
  • Atlantic - 1,672
  • Ont. - 1,539
  • B.C. - 1,466
  • Que. - 1,081
  • National avg. - 1,468

Source: C.D. Howe Institute

View more news


Did you find what you were looking for on our website? Please let us know.

The contents of this site are for informational purposes only and are meant to be discussed with your physician or other qualified health care professional before being acted on. Never disregard any advice given to you by your doctor or other qualified health care professional. Always seek the advice of a physician or other licensed health care professional regarding any questions you have about your medical condition(s) and treatment(s). This site is not a substitute for medical advice.

© 1996 - 2014 MediResource Inc. - MediResource reaches millions of Canadians each year.