COVID-19: Ontario government to spend $216M in effort to address surgical backlog by spring – GLOBAL

July 28, 2021

The Ontario government has announced new funding to address the surgical backlog that was created due to a shift in resources amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In new documents released on Wednesday, officials said its surgical recovery plan will include initiatives that will allow hospitals and health systems to expand total capacity to 110 to 115 per cent in order to clear some of the backlog.

The provincial government allocated $216 million in new funding that will focus on surgical volumes and activity. This will pay for 67,000 additional surgeries and procedures, such as dealing with hip replacements, cataracts and colonoscopies. There will be a focus on areas with the hardest hit hospitals such as in Peel Region and Scarborough.

The roadmap also included new money for thousands of more diagnostic imaging hours to address wait times for scans. Officials said $35 million will be spent to conduct approximately 135,000 more diagnostic imaging hours to eligible hospitals split between 61,406 CT hours and 75,571 MRI hours, which represents a 16-per-cent increase to this year’s budgeted hour

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