VICTORIA — British Columbia's health minister says the province has almost caught up with the backlog of surgeries from the pandemic and weather events while it sets new targets to whittle down the existing waiting lists.
Adrian Dix says 400 nurses and 100 technicians had received training under the surgical renewal program to bolster staffing.
He says the province is also working to hire specialty nurses, anesthesiologists, surgeons and other staff to sustain the health-care system and ease the workloads for current staff.
The province has completed 99.8 per cent of surgeries that were postponed up to the fifth wave of COVID-19 and weather events such as the heat wave and floods last year.
Dix called the progress stunning, saying the whole system has performed exceptionally well, considering the circumstances of the pandemic and last year's weather events.
More than 52,000 urgent scheduled surgeries were completed last year, while another 72,549 unscheduled procedures were preformed because Dix says the government greatly increased operating room hours.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published May 4, 2022.
The Canadian Press