Saskatchewan considers bringing back program that privatized some surgeries

·1 min read

REGINA — The Saskatchewan government is considering bringing back a program that would privatize some surgeries to deal with a growing backlog of people needing an operation.

There are currently 35,000 people in the province who are waiting for surgery, a list that continues to grow as the province's health-care system remains overwhelmed due to COVID-19.

In 2010, the Saskatchewan Party government launched its Saskatchewan Surgical Initiative to help reduce surgical wait times.

The program allowed people on the waiting list to choose either a public or private provider for select surgeries, with a goal that no patient would wait more than three months for their procedure.

The final report on the initiative says the four-year program removed 11,528 patients from the waiting list.

Premier Scott Moe says bringing the program back is one option the government is considering, along with expanding surgical capacity in the public sector.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 4, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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