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Canada

Online tool aims to cut emergency room wait times in Winnipeg

WINNIPEG — The organization tasked with overseeing health care in Winnipeg started an online tool that it hopes will drive down wait times at emergency rooms across the city.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority is now providing real-time wait information at participating walk-in clinics, emergency departments and urgent care centres.

Wait times have surged this season as the province deals with COVID-19, the seasonal flu and respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV.

Some physicians with the health authority say the new tool won’t solve longer wait times in hospitals, but it will help individuals with less urgent needs receive care more quickly.

They say a shortage of staff in all areas of the health-care system continues to be the main cause of high wait times.

Doctors Manitoba, which represents physicians and medical students, says the doctor shortage in the province has reached an all-time high.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 24, 2022.

The Canadian Press