A Culture of Health

Professionals from outside Canada

It is disheartening to hear of Ontarians with dire medical needs having to travel to the USA for help. Many times it is because of lengthy waits for surgery or to be seen by a specialist. Quite often, time is of the essence!

We've all heard of the cab driver who used to be a doctor back in his home country. Ontario and Canada pride themselves as among the most desirable places to live, work, and raise a family. Yet, when it comes to helping new doctors to work and integrate into our province, there seems to be a huge road block. This has caused much of our health care system to be criticized. There are Americans in the current administration who sarcastically say, "Ontario may have universal health care but they cannot meet the needs of their own citizens in a timely fashion -- that is why they travel to the USA for treatment."

The average Canadian cannot understand why, if there are qualified new Canadians who are ready to become doctors in Ontario, and there is an acute shortage of doctors, our government isn’t addressing this situation? Many people say they have to wait 18 months to see a "specialist" for hip replacement, knee specialist or psychiatrists. The knee doctor says the hospital only gives him 2 days a week in the hospital to perform surgery, hence his consultations have an 8 months waiting list. This will become even more of a problem with our aging population! Bottleneck may also be due to Federal government rules. In collaboration with the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Ontario, Ontario should create a rotating program for specialist Doctors to distribute them geographically evenly throughout the province.

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Idea No. 408