THOUSANDS OF 'EXCESS DEATHS' DURING 2020 RELATED TO BACKLOGS FOR MEDICAL PROCEDURES: CMA REPORT

Nov 30, 2021

By Jane Brown

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Canada’s doctors say the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a staggering toll on the health of Canadians, not just for those who contracted it, but because of delayed surgeries and procedures.

In fact, a new report prepared for the Canadian Medical Association reveals that in one four month period alone last year the number of excess deaths in Canada, not related to COVID, was more than 4000. That’s about five percent greater than the expected mortality rate for a normal year.

The report looked at backlogs for eight procedures: breast cancer surgeries, coronary artery bypass graft, CT scans, MRI scans, colectomies, knee replacements, hip replacements and cataract surgery.

The researchers say it would cost at least $1.3 billion to end some of the most dangerous backlogs in key health services by June of 2022 and return to pre-pandemic service levels.

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