Saskatchewan launches surgical information initiatives

The provincial government and the Saskatchewan Surgical Care Network (SSCN), recently launched two health care-related initiatives aimed at improving information sharing with patients.

Patients in the province can now find out how long they will have to wait for a surgical procedure through the SSCN’s Web site. Patients can also contact newly established surgical care co-ordinators for information about their surgery.

Those with surgeries being done in Saskatoon or Regina-Qu’Appelle Regional Health Authorities can call toll free to a surgical care co-ordinator. The co-ordinators can confirm that a patient is on a surgical wait list, check if a patient has an admission date to hospital, give an estimated wait time for surgery, and provide general information about surgical wait list times and hospital booking procedures.

“A top priority of this government is to provide quality and accessible health care, which is sustainable into the future,” Health Minister John Nilson said. “These initiatives… are part of a long-term strategy to ensure reasonable, predictable access to surgery for Saskatchewan people. We are working together with our health care partners to develop province-wide tools that will help doctors to consistently assess their patients’ level of need for surgery and ensure those with the greatest need for surgery receive it first.”

Patients can go to the Web site or call a surgical care co-ordinator to obtain wait times for non-emergent surgery performed over a six-month period in Regina and Saskatoon. As well, the Web site lists the location, phone number and credentials of physicians performing surgery in the province. The Web site does not include patients’ names or personal information.