Doctors Survey Flags Lack of Patient-Care Resources, Need for Workforce Planning

The Canadian Press, October 23, 2013 | Go to article overview

Doctors Survey Flags Lack of Patient-Care Resources, Need for Workforce Planning


Doctors worry about health- care gaps: survey

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TORONTO - A national survey shows doctors are worried about gaps in the health-care system that may be harming patient care.

The 2013 National Physician Survey found doctors' concerns include insufficient hospital beds and inadequate access to advanced diagnostic imaging tools.

A key issue addressed by the more than 10,000 respondents included work hours: physicians spend 54 hours a week on average providing patient care, research and teaching.

Most average an additional 110 hours per month providing on-call services on top of regular practice hours.

While almost 60 per cent of doctors said they were employed to their satisfaction, nearly one-third said they were overworked.

The survey also found that as Canada's population ages, care requirements are shifting -- both geriatricians and dermatologists reported major increases in demand for their services.

"Canada's doctors know that we need to make changes now to respond to the evolving health-care needs of our aging society," said Dr. Louis Hugo Francescutti, president of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA). "As a first step, that means we need our federal government to lead the development of a national strategy for seniors' care in collaboration with the provinces and territories. …

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