If you’ve got the flu, can you see your family doctor on short notice?
The Canadian Institute for Health Information says the number of us who can is growing.
About half of family doctors surveyed in Manitoba and in Canada say most of their patients who need a same-day or next-day appointment can get one.
That’s an improvement from 39 per cent in 2009.
But compared to many other similar countries, we’re not doing as well.
The Commonwealth Fund compared Canada’s survey of family physicians to those in nine other similar countries. Canada ranked ninth out of 10, below the international average of 72%.
What if you need to see a doctor after work or on a weekend?
Only one-quarter of Manitoba doctors said they could arrange for that without having you go to the ER, the lowest in the country.
The Canadian average was 48%. The international average was 75%.
Seventy per cent of doctors said their patients wait too long to see a specialist.
The same number said they don’t always get timely, relevant information about their patients from a specialist, including changes to their medication. That was slightly better than the international average.
Use of Electronic Medical Records Improving
When you see your doctor, does he write notes in a paper file, or type them into a computer?
CIHI says three-quarters of family doctors in Canada use electronic medical records.
That’s double the number using the computer in 2009.
But other similar countries are doing better – the international average is almost 90 per cent.