Wait times for a family doctor continue to grow, even though the government has given more than $ 1 billion in three years to doctors to encourage patient registration.
In fact, it takes an average of 477 days to obtain a family doctor, and as of December 31, 2019, nearly 600,000 Quebecers were registered for the access to a family doctor, reported the Auditor General Guylaine Leclerc in her report. annual report tabled Thursday.
Worse, the ministry has no data allowing it to say whether the “incentives aimed at improving access to family doctors” work, while they are costly to the public treasury: they reach $ 350 million in 2018-2019 .
But even when a citizen finally gets a place with a family doctor, he hasn’t come out of the woods. “Registration is not a guarantee of the availability of family physicians to meet with patients when required,” notes Mme Leclerc.
She points to “signs” of this difficulty of access. The VG underlines that 71% of emergency room visits are less urgent or non-urgent). More than two-thirds of these preventable visits were made by people who have a family doctor.