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Provincial Wait Time Benchmark Update

Provincial Wait Time Benchmark Update Q1 2015-2016

During the first quarter of 2015-2016 (April 1 to June 30), wait time reports demonstrate that, on average, 95 per cent of residents of Newfoundland and Labrador (NL) received timely access to benchmark procedures within the recommended targets, which is consistent with the previous quarter’s strong results. Nearly all or 99 per cent of patients received access to radiation treatment within 28 days; 96 per cent of all cardiac bypass patients had surgery within 182 days; 97 per cent of first eye cataract procedures were performed within 112 days; 95 per cent of residents accessed hip replacement surgery and 86 per cent knee replacement within 182 days; and 90 per cent of hip fracture surgeries were performed in less than 48 hours.

Curative Radiotherapy

The national benchmark for radiation treatment is 28 days. During this quarter, 99 per cent of 186 newly diagnosed cancer patients began radiation treatment within the 28 day benchmark. The time in which half (or the median) of these patients waited to begin treatment was 13 days, and the number of days in which nine out of 10 patients (90th percentile) began treatment was 21 days.

Cardiac Bypass Surgery

The national benchmark has three tiers: Level 1 within 14 days; Level 2 within 42 days; and Level 3 within 182 days. Nationally, cardiac bypass surgery benchmark data according to the three urgency levels is not comparable, therefore NL will report summary level data for all three levels combined. During this quarter, 96 per cent of 75 cardiac bypass surgeries were performed within 182 days; the median wait time was 9 days; and the 90th percentile was 163 days. At the end of June 30, 2015, 32 patients were waiting for cardiac bypass surgery in the province.

Cataracts

The national benchmark for cataract surgery is 112 days. Nearly 1,600 cataract cases were completed in this quarter, including 1004 cases on the first eye. In the Eastern region, 93 per cent of first eye included cases were performed in 112 days; the median was 61 days; and the 90th percentile was 103 days. In the Central region, 100 per cent of first eye included cases were completed in 112 days; the median was 71 days; and the 90th percentile was 98 days. In the Western region, 99 per cent of first eye cases were completed in 112 days; the median was 13 days; and the 90th percentile was 44 days. In the Labrador-Grenfell region, the itinerant specialists did not visit to perform cataract cases this quarter.

Hip Replacement

The national benchmark for hip replacement surgery is 182 days. During this quarter, there were close to 130 hip replacement surgeries completed in the province. In the Eastern region, 96 per cent of 82 cases were completed within 182 days; the median was 101 days; and the 90th percentile was 178 days. In the Central region, 100 per cent of 22 cases were completed within 182 days; the median was 29 days; and the 90th percentile was 173 days. In the Western region, 91 per cent of 27 hip replacements were completed within 182 days; the median was 87 days; the 90th percentile was 148 days. In the Labrador-Grenfell region, due to the low number of surgeries being completed, data for this quarter was suppressed.

Knee Replacement

The national benchmark for knee replacement surgery is 182 days. There were 262 knee joint replacement cases completed in this quarter. In the Eastern region, 87 per cent of 132 cases were completed within the benchmark; the median was 108 days; and the 90th percentile was 184 days. In the Central region, 68 per cent of 61 cases were completed within the benchmark; the median was 153 days; and the 90th percentile was 273 days. In the Western region, 96 per cent of 56 cases were completed within the benchmark; the median was 57 days; and the 90th percentile was 176 days. In the Labrador-Grenfell region, 100 per cent of 13 cases were completed within 141 days, which is much sooner than the benchmark; the median was 70 days; and the 90th percentile was 111 days.

Hip Fracture Repair

The national benchmark for hip fracture surgery is 48 hours. There were 115 hip fracture surgeries completed in this quarter. In the Eastern region, 87 per cent of 84 cases were completed in 48 hours; the median wait was 25 hours and 18 minutes and the 90th percentile was 49 hours and 39 minutes. In the Central region, 100 per cent of 14 cases were completed in 24 hours, which is much sooner than the 48 hour benchmark; the median was 5 hours and 17 minutes; and the 90th percentile was 19 hours and 17 minutes. In the Western region, 100 per cent of 17 hip fracture surgeries were completed in less than 48 hours; the median wait was 15 hours and 27 minutes and the 90th percentile was 43 hours and 43 minutes. In the Labrador-Grenfell region, no hip fracture surgeries were performed in this quarter.

Breast Screening

Organized breast screening participation rates in 2013 and 2014 of women aged 50 to 69, ranged from 54 per cent uptake in the Eastern region; 57 per cent in the Western region; 75 per cent in the Central region and 57 per cent provincially. In addition, throughout the province, there are a significant number of opportunistic screening mammograms performed in the diagnostic imaging departments of acute care facilities each year.

Cervical Screening

The Provincial Cervical Screening Initiatives Program modified its benchmark to report the number of women aged 20 to 69 who have had at least one Pap test in a three-year period back in 2011. This change was in keeping with best practice and aligns with the National Performance Indicators developed by the Pan-Canadian Cervical Screening Initiative. It also reflected the 2011 routine screening recommendation in NL – which is for women who had negative Pap tests three years in a row, with no history of abnormal Pap results, to change their routine screening to every three years. Based on this, the participation rate in NL during the 2012-2014 calendar years was 61 per cent.

Provincial Wait Times Data
2015-16 Quarter 1: April 1 to June 30

Service Area  Pan-Canadian Benchmarks Newfoundland and Labrador
Wait Times -First Quarter
(April 1 - June 30, 2015-2016)
Curative Radiotherapy Within 4 weeks (28 days) of being ready to treat.
  • 99%
Coronary Bypass
Surgery (CABG)
Level 1 Within 2 weeks (14 days)
Level 2 Within 6 weeks (42 days)
Level 3 Within 26 weeks (182 days)
  • 96% within 182 days
Cataract Within 16 weeks (112 days) for patients who are at high risk.
  • Eastern Health: 93% First eye
  • Central Health: 100% First eye
  • Western Health: 99% First eye
  • Labrador-Grenfell Health: NV
  • Provincial: 97% First eye
Hip Replacement Within 26 weeks (182 days)
  • Eastern Health: 96%
  • Central Health: 100%
  • Western Health: 91%
  • Labrador-Grenfell Health: DS
  • Provincial: 95%
Knee Replacement Within 26 weeks (182 days)
  • Eastern Health: 87%
  • Central Health: 68%
  • Western Health: 96%
  • Labrador-Grenfell Health: 100% in 141 days
  • Provincial: 86%
Hip Fracture Repair Fixation within 48 hours
  • Eastern Health: 87%
  • Central Health: 100% in 24h 4m
  • Western Health: 100%
  • Labrador-Grenfell Health: NV
  • Provincial: 90%
Service Area  Pan-Canadian Benchmarks Screening Participation Rates
Breast Screening Women aged 50-69 every two years Biennial participation rates (percentages) for the 2013-2014 calendar years for each of the province’s 3 breast screening centres.
  • Eastern Health: 54% (St. John’s)
  • Central Health: 75% (Gander)
  • Western Health: 57% (Corner Brook)
  • Provincial: 57%
Cervical Screening Women, starting at age 18, every three years to age 69 after two normal pap tests. Across the country, administrative data are not available to report participation rates according to the national benchmark, therefore participation rates are reported in accordance to the provincial standard.
The number of women aged 20 to 69 who have had at least one Pap test in a three-year period.
  • Participation rates (percentages) for the 2012-2014 calendar years for the province. Provincial: 61%

Data Source: Regional Health Authorities (RHAs), Newfoundland and Labrador.
Notes: In keeping with data standards, outliers or cases that do not comply with the standard wait time definitions are excluded from cataract wait time calculations and Eastern and Central Regional Health Authorities are working to address this. In the Labrador-Grenfell region, a low number (DS) of hip replacement and (NV) hip fracture surgeries were performed this quarter. The iterant specialists did not visit (NV) to perform cataract procedures this quarter.
Date: December 30, 2015

Wait Time Benchmark Update Q1, 2015-16 PDF (240 KB)

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