Health firm says Nova Scotia patients wait the longest to see a doctor
A new report from a company that specializes in arranging medical appointments says Nova Scotia now leads the way with the longest wait times for walk-in clinics in the country.
The report from Medimap, says Nova Scotia patients wait an average of 83 minutes to see a physician at a walk in clinic -- 39 minutes longer than it was in 2021.
"So if you're a patient in Halifax or anywhere in Nova Scotia, you should unfortunately expect to wait a least an hour to see a doctor, which is really troubling," said Teddy Wickland, the company's VP of Operations.
The company is an online service that matches patients with clinics and other health-care professionals.
Frank MacNeil was attempting to see a doctor at a walk-in clinic in Hammonds Plains on Monday afternoon.
Although he has a doctor in Bridgewater, N.S., he wasn't prepared to wait two or three months for an appointment.
"So, now I'm trying to find a walk-in clinic for a simple ear infection, and it seems like they're either closed or the wait times are insane," MacNeil told CTV News. "I can't even get into the administration rooms."
Many walk-in clinics no longer accept walk-in patients: they're urged to book ahead and spots fill up quickly.
"We are very, very busy here. We typically open the phone lines at 8:45 a.m. We are usually booked for the day by about 9:10 a.m.," said Dr. Jennifer Burns-Lachance, a family doctor at the Hammonds Plains Family Practice and Walk-In Clinic.
"So, it's very quick."
Medimap says it works with 1,200 walk-in clinics in Canada, but none of them are in Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador or up North.
The data is extrapolated from the clinics it does worth with.
"We work with about 70 per cent of all the walk-in clinics in Canada," said Wickland.
"We don't have many partners in some of the smaller regions. So we are making an assumption to spread our data, that 70 per cent, across the whole country. I would say what we've heard anecdotally is that this is a national issue, and so even though we might not have the data from P.E.I. or New Brunswick, we expect the same sort of trends to exist there as well."
"It's a huge swath of data that we collect," said Wickland.
“In Halifax, I want to say we have ten to 15 clinics who submitted data over the last year. A lot of them, what we've seen is they've stopped submitting data, so that tells us two things -– either they reached capacity and they realized or felt we can't continue to publish our wait times online, we just need to say we're closed.”
"Or, unfortunately another possibility is that they closed entirely, is what we've heard anecdotally from some of our partners."
But the province disputes the conclusions.
In an emailed statement to CTV News, Department of Health and Wellness Communications and Media Relations Advisor Khalehla Perrault said, "Walk-in clinics are an important healthcare resource. However, they are businesses run by medical professionals that manage their own caseloads and acceptable wait times."
Perrault added there are other ways Nova Scotians can receive medical care, including VirtualCareNS, pharmacies, mobile clinics, urgent treatment centres and clinics.
"Just last week the province announced another service: the Community Pharmacy Primary Care Clinics program. Pharmacists in these clinics will have dedicated time to see patients with common illnesses. We are also working to add new collaborative care teams in 14 more communities across the province. We’re supporting the Dalhousie family medicine clinics, which will expand to more communities."
"We know access to primary health care is a challenge in Nova Scotia, and we are working on solutions. However, this study includes limited Nova Scotia data and was not completed by a neutral third party. In addition, it does not include all primary health-care avenues such as mobile health-care clinics and pharmacies. We recommend Nova Scotians consider this when assessing the value of this index," the statement concluded.
Frank MacNeil needed no convincing wait times are longer.
"I would believe it, honestly," he said.
"Knowing how many of my family and friends can't even get into walk-in clinics -- are just going straight to the ER and having to wait hours there."
Atlantic Top Stories
CTVNews.ca Top Stories
Canada makes amendments to foreign homebuyers ban – here's what they look like
Months after Canada's ban on foreign homebuyers took effect on Jan. 1, the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation has made several amendments to the legislation allowing non-Canadians to purchase residential properties in certain circumstances.
'Leave this with me': Alberta premier heard on call with COVID-19 protester
Alberta Premier Danielle Smith, in a leaked cellphone call, commiserated with a COVID-19 protester about his trial while divulging to him there was an internal dispute over how Crown prosecutors were handling COVID-19 cases.
What is the grocery rebate in federal budget 2023? Key questions, answered
To help offset rising living expenses, the Government of Canada has introduced a one-time grocery rebate for low- and modest-income Canadians. Here is what we know about the rebate.
RCMP arrest 5 while executing search warrant at Wet'suwet'en protest camp
RCMP officers executed a search warrant at a protest camp on Wet'suwet'en traditional territory near the under-construction Coastal GasLink pipeline Wednesday.
'Compostable' food packaging may contain hazardous 'forever chemicals': Canadian study
As Canada phases out single-use plastics, more restaurants are opting to use 'compostable' takeout containers. But a new study suggests some of these supposedly eco-friendly containers may pose hazards to our health and the environment.
Could Usain Bolt outrun a 900-pound dinosaur? Physics professor poses the question
A new academic paper pits legendary sprinter Usain Bolt against a 900-pound dinosaur to see who could run a 100-metre distance the fastest.
Recalled in Canada: Change tables over entrapment hazard, hoodies due to risk of choking
Health Canada has issued two recalls, one for change tables over an entrapment hazard and another for bamboo nursing hoodies due to a risk of choking.
Many Canadians like to tell 'white lies' about home-cooked meals: survey
Have you ever had to lie about the quality of a home-cooked meal to protect someone's feelings? According to a new survey by Research Co. you’re not the only one.
Spending to increase economic capacity is fiscally responsible, Freeland says in post-budget defence
Defending her latest federal budget, Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said spending that increases economic capacity is fiscally responsible.
BREAKING | Man pulled from house fire in Toronto's Junction Triangle dies in hospital
A man is dead after being pulled from a fire at a home in Toronto’s Junction Triangle neighbourhood.
A rare weather phenomenon strikes southern Ontario again
Thundersnow has struck southern Ontario for a second time this month.
Why is there no cell service on the TTC? Riders say it could increase safety
The Toronto Transit Commission signed a deal in 2012 to provide cellular service on the subway network, but over a decade later, few are able to make a call in an emergency—something the TTC board members, riders and parents say has to change in the wake of the death of Gabriel Magalhaes.
‘I started breaking down:’ Friends remember 15-year-old homicide victim
A 15-year-old girl shot to death in the community of Martindale early Tuesday morning, has now been identified by friends and police as Sarah Alexis Jorquera.
Woman in custody, charges pending following Lions Park LRT station stabbing
Calgary police say they've arrested a woman in connection with a stabbing at the Lions Park LRT station that stemmed from a fight between several people.
Lethbridge UCP candidate Torry Tanner's claims against teachers disputed
A United Conservative Party candidate in Lethbridge claims teachers are exposing students to pornography and gender reassignment without parental knowledge.
Bill 15: Quebec tables legislation to overhaul health system
The CAQ government has unveiled its long-promised plan to improve Quebec's public health network. Tabled at the Quebec legislature Wednesday by Health Minister Christian Dubé, Bill 15 promises a major shakeup.
'I lost a brother': Funeral held for teen who died in Old Montreal fire
Almost two weeks after his death, a funeral was held in Laval Wednesday for a teenager who died in the fire in Old Montreal.
Flooded and fed up: St-Leonard homeowners file class-action suit over heavy rain damages
A group of homeowners in St-Leonard has filed a class-action lawsuit against their borough and the City of Montreal, claiming municipal authorities are to blame for repeated floodings during heavy rain.
Online video between Danielle Smith and Artur Pawlowski raises questions over interference
In an online video, Alberta Premier Danielle Smith is heard speaking with outspoken Calgary pastor Artur Pawlowski, creating questions about her influence on Alberta court cases.
Man found dead in SUV, Edmonton homicide detectives on the case
Police are looking for help in the suspicious death of a man found in a vehicle in north Edmonton Wednesday morning.
'Serious labour shortage' holding Alberta's tourism sector back: industry advocates
Alberta's tourism sector has a "serious labour shortage" that can threaten its long-term viability, a new labour study has found.
Northern Ont. family ‘ecstatic’ as 25-year-old murder mystery finally solved
Robert Steven Wright was convicted Wednesday of murdering Renee Sweeney, a little more than 25 years after her brutal killing shocked the community.
B.C. man pleads guilty to northern Ont. shooting, Crown drops attempted murder charge
A man who admitted to shooting up a home in Greater Sudbury in 2020 over a drug theft pled guilty Wednesday to reduced charges.
Driver caught travelling 200km/hr on major Ontario highway
A 20-year-old has been charged with careless driving after travelling double the speed limit on a major Ontario highway.
Coyote encounter unnerves woman
An evening walk along the trails of Westminster Ponds in southeast London, Ont. turned into a frantic scene for Denise Singh and her two dogs.
Over a dozen dogs 'dumped' across Huron and Perth Counties
More than a dozen dogs were abandoned across Huron and Perth Counties on March 23 and 24, and local dog lovers are furious about it.
2,700 cattle escape $2-million barn fire
Damage is estimated at $2-million after a barn and grass fire in southeast London on Tuesday.
Manitobans should prepare for a gas price hike according to an expert
Come the weekend, Manitobans will be paying more for gas and the price could climb even higher in the coming weeks and months according to a gas expert.
Brandon pauses public engagement on 30-year vision over 'inappropriate and unsafe behaviour'
The City of Brandon has paused its public consultation on its 30-year plan for the city due to 'inappropriate and unsafe behaviour' from some residents.
Manitoba family launches lawsuit over COVID-19 vaccination
A Manitoba family has launched a lawsuit alleging their 23-year-old son had a stroke days after receiving a dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, leaving him legally blind.
LRT | Stage 2 of Ottawa LRT faces further delay
The long-awaited southern extension to Ottawa's light rail network is facing a further delay, a city committee heard Wednesday.
Truck held together with bungee cord pulled off the road in eastern Ontario
Quinte OPP says officers stopped the vehicle on Trenton-Frankford Road on Wednesday with a bungee rope stretching across the back of the truck.
Migrants' influx helps Cornwall, Ont. labour shortage
Hundreds of migrants, who have crossed the Canadian border at Roxham Road in Quebec and have settled in Cornwall, were on the hunt for jobs on Wednesday.
Saskatoon police release video of 3 people placing 'large container' in dumpster where body was found
Saskatoon Police Service is asking for the public’s help in identifying three individuals they believe are connected to a suspicious death.
Saskatoon murder trial on hold as police investigate new revelations
A Saskatoon murder trial is being adjourned to allow police to follow-up on "significant information" that just came to the Crown prosecutor's attention Wednesday.
Dog that attacked five-year-old Saskatoon boy involved in three other attacks
CTV News has learned a dog that attacked a five-year-old boy last week had been declared dangerous in February 2022, but the city had lost track of the owner a year ago.
'I made it': Inside the addiction and mental health treatment ongoing at old Riverview Hospital site
The Riverview Hospital itself has been closed for more than a decade, but 289 people are currently receiving treatment for mental health, addictions or both at the old site.
City of Vancouver considering requiring grant recipients to be 'respectful' in order to get funding
Vancouver city council has asked staff to shape a policy that would require grant recipients to engage with officials in a "respectful manner," a move that one political scientist says suggests an attempt to prevent or punish criticism.
'A freeze response of shock': Expert weighs in on bystanders not stepping in during fatal Vancouver stabbing
After a man was fatally stabbed outside of a Vancouver Starbucks in front of dozens of witnesses, video of the attack is circulating on social media, raising questions about why nobody stepped in to help.
City council waiting for next steps in Experience Regina rebrand
The City of Regina is waiting for an update regarding the next steps for the Experience Regina rebrand.
Regina's Dewdney Avenue strip to undergo 2 year renovation project
The Dewdney Avenue strip between Broad Street and Albert Street is about to undergo a major two year renovation project.
Saskatchewan to spend $6 million for some hip and knee surgeries in Calgary
The Saskatchewan government is set to spend up to $6 million to send patients to Calgary for hip and knee surgeries.
IIO investigating after man driving construction vehicle shot, seriously injured by police in Duncan, B.C.
A man was taken to hospital with serious injuries following a police shooting in Duncan, B.C., on Tuesday evening.
Vancouver Island non-profit calls for more support for women with brain injuries from violent partners
A Vancouver Island non-profit is calling for more support for women who suffer a brain injury at the hands of a violent partner.
Police investigating 'targeted' attempted arson at home in Saanich
Police are investigating what they believe was a targeted arson attack at a home north of Victoria.