Most recent data from Canada, where there is universal health insurance: Waiting Your Turn – Wait Times for Health Care in Canada, 2017 Report
Waiting for treatment has become a defining characteristic of Canadian health care. In order to document the lengthy queues for visits to specialists and for diagnostic and surgical procedures in the country, the Fraser Institute has — for over two decades — surveyed specialist physicians across 12 specialties and 10 provinces.
This edition of Waiting Your Turn indicates that, overall, waiting times for medically necessary treatment have increased since last year. Specialist physicians surveyed report a median waiting time of 21.2 weeks between referral from a general practitioner and receipt of treatment—longer than the wait of 20.0 weeks reported in 2016. This year’s wait time—the longest ever recorded in this survey’s history — is 128% longer than in 1993, when it was just 9.3 weeks.
Unsurprisingly, when supply of a good is bureaucratically rationed, shortages result. When the good is “free,” it’s worse.
Somebody should tell Nancy and Bernie.