Are you suffering while you wait?

We are concerned about wait times for our patients, both for referrals to the proper healthcare providers for orthopaedic problems and for surgery.

YOU can make a difference by telling us your story and adding  your voice to the conversation by emailing the BCOA, your MLA (Find your MLA), your MP (Find your MP), the BC Minister of Health, and the federal Minister of Health.

Click here to see videos of what our members have to say. We have shared these videos with the Ministry of Health, the regional Health Authorities, the media and elected officials. Consider forwarding  one or more of the videos to your physician, your MLA, your MP and the BC Minister of Health.

1st Annual Patient Focused Wait Time Report The BC Orthopaedic Association Fiscal 2016-17

Scope of the Problem

Many people in British Columbia have experienced an episode of temporary bodily pain that makes the everyday activities of standing, walking or sleeping difficult.

Every year, tens of thousands of British Columbians are referred by their family physicians to see an Orthopaedic surgeon because their pain did not go away.

Measuring the Wait

The orthopaedic surgeons in BC currently fund an initiative to collect their patient’s wait times from their office electronic medical records, which are also used to manage their wait lists and book patients for consultation visits and surgery

Waiting in Pain for the Consultation

Many orthopaedic surgeons in BC, after receiving their request for a consultation from the family physician, will triage the patient based on medical urgency. If the referral is accepted by the surgeon, the patient is added to their consultation wait list.

Between April 1st 2016 and March 31st 2017 we recorded 16,632 consultations performed by Orthopaedic Surgeons in BC at the request of referring physicians. Half of the patients waited longer than 21 weeks.  1663 patients waited longer than 64 weeks for their consultation.

Waiting in Pain for Surgery.

We recorded 3885 patients who had surgery in fiscal 2016-17. Half of the patients longer than 33 weeks from the time they signed their consents for surgery. 389 patients waited longer than 78 weeks from the time they signed their consents.

Half of these 3885 patients waited longer than 61 weeks from the time they were first referred by their family doctor to their day of surgery.

All health regions in BC had similarly long wait times

Failure to acknowledge the Scope of the Problem

We call upon our elected officials and civil servants to acknowledge the widespread problems with timely access to Orthopaedic consultation and surgery. The BC health care system needs major reform if BC citizens are to receive timely access to care.

To add your voice to the conversation about timely access to care, email the BC Minister of Health at or the Federal Minister of Health at