WINNIPEG — The Manitoba government is spending $50 million to reduce surgical wait times and work on reducing the backlog of procedures in hospitals across the province caused by COVID-19.
Premier Brian Pallister announced the funding on Wednesday ahead of the province’s 2021 budget, which will be tabled on April 7.
“COVID-19 has challenged our health-care system and created a pandemic pileup of delayed surgeries and procedures,” said Pallister.
“We know that every delay represents someone who is suffering while they wait, which is why we’re making this major investment to address the surgical backlog and get Manitobans the care they need sooner.”
Pallister says the funding will address wait times for priority procedures and services, as well as hip, knee and cataract procedures. Further details will be revealed following the release of the budget next week.
Doctors Manitoba, which represents physicians, said the funding will help tackle surgical and diagnostic wait-lists.
“This is a very good start towards catching up on the thousands of patients who have had to wait for their procedure because of this pandemic,” the organization said in a statement.
The province has roughly 10,000 people waiting for medical procedures and tests.