Canada ranks low among countries with universal health care in number of doctors, hospital beds and wait times: study

In a global ranking of the 30 countries with universal health care programs, Canada ranks among the top spenders on health care, yet has the highest number of doctors, hospital beds, MRIs and long waits. It ranks near the bottom by time. New research from the Fraser Institute.

The study, 2022 Universal Health Care Country Performance Comparison, released November 10, compared Canada with 30 other developed countries. Care, Clinical Performance, and Quality.

The study found that Canada spent more on healthcare than most other countries in the ranking, but its performance was moderate to poor in most categories.

After adjusting for age of the population, Canada ranked highest in health spending as a share of the economy at 13.3% and had the eighth highest per capita health spending.

“There is a clear imbalance between the value Canadians receive and the relatively large sums they spend on the health care system,” said Backus, director of health policy research at the Fraser Institute and co-author of the study. Barua says. in a news release.

Last wait time

Canada ranks last among the 10 comparable countries recording wait times for healthcare, and has the lowest percentage of patients who waited less than four weeks to see a specialist (38 %), with the lowest percentage of patients waiting within 4 weeks (62%). 4 months in elective surgery.

Of the 30 developed countries, Canada ranks near the bottom (28th) in terms of doctor ratio, with just 2.8 doctors per 1,000 people. In terms of nursing beds, Canada ranked 23rd out of her 28 countries, with her 2.2 beds per 1,000 people.

Canada ranked near the bottom of the list (26 out of 29) with 10.3 MRIs per million and 27 out of 30 for CT scanners with 15.0 scanners per million.

Canada performed well in terms of breast, colon and rectal cancer survival, but ranked as the worst country to measure obstetric trauma during vaginal delivery.

“Canada ranked last (or near last) in four of the four indicators of timeliness of care, and an index measuring the proportion of patients who reported cost as a barrier to access. ranked 7th (out of 10) in the

Canada ranks average in number of nurses and 9th out of 30 in number of long-term care beds. Canada outperformed the average country in providing coronary artery bypass grafts and knee replacement surgery.

Research shows that availability of health care resources is a fundamental requirement for a well-functioning health care system. “The data suggest that Canada has significantly less human and capital health care resources compared to countries that ‘spend comparable amounts on health care’.

Marnie Cathcart


Marnie Cathcart is a reporter based in Edmonton.