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  • Writer's pictureJessica Smith Cross

Your Ontario health care experiences: ‘Huge wait times. Poor quality care’

'Our government is not OK with that status quo,' says a spokesperson for the Health minister

Ontario Health Minister Sylvia Jones makes an announcement on health care with Premier Doug Ford in the province in Toronto, Monday, Jan. 16, 2023 Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press

We asked you to share your health-care experiences with us, and you did.

You told us that Ontarians are waiting too long for health care at every turn: to get a family doctor, to see their family doctor, in emergency rooms, for specialist appointments, for mental health care, for tests, for surgeries, and for beds in long-term care.

Village Media partnered with tech company CrowdSmart AI to gauge Ontarians’ experiences with the health-care system and asked readers to take part. More than 1,500 readers shared more than 2,000 thoughts on the state of the health-care system and their own experiences, and they gave feedback on the ideas posted by other participants that resonated the most with them.

CrowdSmart AI’s system surfaced the ones that best reflect Ontario's experience as a whole and found the common themes. 

The most loud and clear? Wait times. So loud, in fact, it almost drowned out everything else.

The simple phrase "Long wait times" was the single most-endorsed thought shared by readers. “Huge wait times. Poor quality care,” was the third.

Others got into specifics on the same theme.

Some spoke of their long waits for care in emergency rooms.

"I am afraid to go to ER due to wait times," wrote another.

One reader wrote of spending $8,000 on private care for their husband, praying their finances would hold on long enough he wouldn't be forced into a long-term-care home of not of their choosing. 


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