I would like to thank Dr Peeters for his letter as well as all the readers who sent me e-mails about my article. I agree that there are regional variations in the length of waiting lists in Canada. In general, wealthier provinces have shorter or nonexistent waiting lists compared with poorer provinces. However, in my experience in Québec, patients still have to wait many months for tests such as outpatient magnetic resonance imaging or procedures such as hip replacement surgery. I agree that unlimited access to high-technology care does not necessarily lead to better care. However, an outpatient wait of many months for magnetic resonance imaging or for hip replacement surgery is not exactly optimal care either.
Eisenberg MJ. The Perspective of a Canadian Practitioner in America—Reply. Arch Intern Med. 2006;166(13):1421-1422. doi:10.1001/archinte.166.13.1421-c