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System Performance

Wait Times Data Interpretation Notes

Special Notice on Surgery and Diagnostic Imaging Volumes During COVID-19

Under the Chief Medical Officer of Health’s Directive #2 and Memorandum, which was in effect from March 19 to May 26, 2020, health service providers and health service organizations including hospitals were directed to reduce elective surgeries and other non-emergency clinical activities to preserve capacity during the pandemic. Exceptions included urgent and time-sensitive cases.

During this time, hospitals significantly reduced services under Directive #2, and volumes may have been reduced by up to 95% compared to the previous year. Current volumes and the corresponding wait times reflect Ontario’s primary focus on essential services and exceptions.

Note that publicly reported wait times information remains accurate and reliable for all completed procedures that were prioritized during COVID-19 under Directive #2.

On May 26, 2020, Directive #2 was updated to begin a gradual restart of deferred services. Publicly reported wait times are expected to increase after this time to reflect deferred elective surgeries and other non-emergency clinical activities during COVID-19.

To see the impact on volume for a specific procedure, please refer to the System Performance section for Surgery and Diagnostic Imaging on the website. Scroll down to the last section of the results page to generate a graph for volume.

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