CAG is one of 14 national medical organizations to provide data to the annual Wait Time Alliance report. Through its latest Canadian Association of Gastroenterology Survey of Access to GastroEnterology (SAGE) completed this April, results reveal a worrisome trend of longer wait times. Data was gathered from nearly 200 participating gastroenterologists who submitted information on approximately 2,000 patient interactions within the health system. SAGE surveys were also conducted in 2005 and 2008 . Over a seven-year period, the trend in longer wait times is evident according to soon to be published 2012 SAGE data. “Our analysis shows that patient wait times are now 30 days longer than they were in 2005,” says CAG Dr. Desmond Leddin, Lead on the CAG SAGE program. “This is a disturbing trend, and one which indicates a need to pursue strategies to ensure patients receive the digestive care they need in a more timely manner.” As an example, the recent SAGE data shows that a patient with a high likelihood of severe Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) can expect a total wait time of 126 days. Of these 126 days, patients wait on average 72 days for a consultation and 44 days for a diagnostic endoscopy. Given the target total wait time of 14 days for this disease category, these patients are waiting 16 weeks longer than the recommended wait time target. (See fact sheet ) “The gap between current wait times and the desired target is too wide and wait times are getting longer,” says Dr. Dan Sadowski, President of the CAG. “In human terms, what this means is that many patients live with pain and some are unable to work or attend school and can only do so with difficulty while waiting for consultation and treatment.” This year, the WTA report is shedding more light on the total wait time(i) Canadians can experience in receiving necessary medical care. Thanks to the total wait times data collected and provided by CAG, the WTA report is now more comprehensive than ever. “The CAG has been a source of robust information for our expanded focus on wait times”, says Dr. Chris Simpson, Chair, Wait Time Alliance.
Health Canada Approves HUMIRA® (adalimumab) for the Treatment of Ulcerative Colitis (UC)
People should be tested for TB before HUMIRA use and monitored for signs and symptoms of TB during therapy. People at risk of TB may be treated with medicine for TB before starting HUMIRA. Treatment with HUMIRA should not be started in a person with an active infection, unless approved by a doctor. HUMIRA should be stopped if a person develops a serious infection. People should tell their doctor if they live in or have been to a region where certain fungal infections are common, have had TB, hepatitis B, are prone to infections, or have symptoms such as fever, fatigue, cough, or sores. For people taking TNF blockers, including HUMIRA, the chance of getting lymphoma or other cancers may increase. Some people have developed a rare type of cancer called hepatosplenic T-cell lymphoma. This type of cancer often results in death. If using TNF blockers including HUMIRA, the chance of getting two types of skin cancer (basal cell and squamous cell) may increase. These types are generally not life threatening if treated. Other possible serious side effects with HUMIRA include hepatitis B infection in carriers of the virus, allergic reactions, nervous system problems, blood problems, certain immune reactions, including a lupus-like syndrome, liver problems, and new or worsening heart failure or psoriasis. The use of HUMIRA with other biologic DMARDS (e.g., anakinra, or abatacept), or other TNF antagonists is not recommended. People using HUMIRA should not receive live vaccines. Common side effects of HUMIRA include injection site reactions (redness, rash, swelling, itching, or bruising), upper respiratory infections (including sinus infections), headaches, rash, and nausea. HUMIRA is given by injection under the skin.