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F. F. Si, W. G. Hodge, Y. Su, Y. I. Pan, T. Ramsay, D. Fergusson, R. Buhrmann; An Investigation of the Relationship Between Cataract Surgery Wait Times and Rates of Surgery. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 2010;51(13):4558.
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The province of Ontario Canada has two wait time registries for cataract surgery that allows for population based estimates of the use of wait times as an indicator of heath service need.
Both wait time registries were used to determine if wait time was correlated with rates of surgery and this data was then stratified by priority of cataract (1 to 4 based on province wide definitions), region of the province, age and gender. Wait time was defined by the time from surgical booking to case completion.
The total number of cases used for the year 2008 was 65,469 which were all cases performed in Ontario in that year.Results: Wait times ranged from 7 days to 6 months. There was a very weak correlation between wait time and rate of surgery (r=0.0003). This weak correlation persisted for all priority types, regions of Ontario, patient age and gender.
Important population health service metrics such as rates of surgery, either overall or by region did not correlate well with wait times. Wait times are a poor metric upon which to base population health service decisions such as cataract surgery.
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