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More than $1B needed to clear surgical backlogs: Canadian Medical Association

Deloitte found a backlog of 327,800 procedures across Canada

OTTAWA — The Canadian Medical Association says it will cost $1.3 billion to clear the backlogs for eight key procedures that were put on hold during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The association commissioned consulting firm Deloitte to report on the effect of the pandemic on Canada's health-care system. 

Deloitte found a backlog of 327,800 procedures across Canada. 

The report included eight procedures: hip replacement, cataract surgery, knee replacement, MRI scans, CT scans, coronary artery bypass and breast cancer surgery. 

Deloitte found it would cost $1.3 billion in additional funding to return wait times for those procedures to their pre-pandemic levels by June 2022. 

The report says the cost may be even higher when the effect of the fourth wave is considered. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 30, 2021.

Laura Osman, The Canadian Press

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