Doctor shortage still affecting Alberta wait times

Canada ranked last in a recent survey about wait times, and one Calgary doctor says it still has to do with a shortage of family physicians.

Calgary doctor thinks more needs to be done to let people know where to get care after hours

Albertans love to complain about access to health care, but a new report shows they're not far off the mark. 2:03

A Calgary physician says the ongoing shortage of doctors is still affecting wait times in Alberta.

A report from the Health Council of Canada ranks this country last among 11 developed countries.

Dr. Cathryn Kuzyk says family physicians are often overwhelmed by patient demand.

"I, like a lot of family doctors, put aside a certain number of slots each day for urgent or same day requests," she said. 

"But that number is often exceeded, so it's a job that my receptionist and I have in triaging who really is the most acute to be seen that day."

Kuzyk says the health-care system does not necessarily need more money, it just needs officials to look at ways to operate health care more efficiently.

The Health Council report also found 67 per cent of Albertans believe it's difficult to get health care on evenings and weekends.

Kuzyk says the provincial Health Link helpline is a good place for people to start if they need care outside of regular hours.

  • Watch the video above for more on the story from CBC's Jennifer Lee.


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