Doctors worried about system gaps
TORONTO—A national survey shows doctors are worried about gaps in the health-care system that may be harming patient care.
The 2013 National Physician Survey found doctors’ concerns include insufficient hospital beds and inadequate access to advanced diagnostic imaging tools.
Most average an additional 110 hours per month providing on-call services on top of regular practice hours.
While almost 60 percent of doctors said they were employed to their satisfaction, nearly one-third said they were overworked.
The survey also found that as Canada’s population ages, care requirements are shifting—both geriatricians and dermatologists reported major increases in demand for their services.
“Canada’s doctors know that we need to make changes now to respond to the evolving health-care needs of our aging society,” said Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti, president of the Canadian Medical Association.
“As a first step, that means we need our federal government to lead the development of a national strategy for seniors’ care in collaboration with the provinces and territories.
“The time to act is now,” he stressed.
Over- and under-employment also were key issues in the survey—a research project jointly conducted by the College of Family Physicians, the CMA, and Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons.