Reduced wait times for
Research can help solve
universal problems such as wait
times. Children’s Allied Health
Services in Lethbridge, a part of
Alberta Health Services, cut 142
days off the wait time for its
services by using principles
researched and tested by the
Primary Care Initiative of Alberta.
Since 2003, the initiative has
helped health-care providers
effectively improve Albertans’
access to care.
Staff learned how better to get
patients into and through services
faster by, among other things,
making new clients a priority and
creating a central booking system—
all without increasing staff.
“We didn’t do groundbreaking
research, but we found a way to cut
wait times for our services,” says
Alison Pavan, a physiotherapist at
Children’s Allied Health Services.
“Now we regularly track our wait
times and look at what we can do to
New test detects colon
If you’re aged 50 to 74 with an
average risk of developing colon cancer,
you may now have an alternative
to a colonoscopy. The new fecal
immunochemical test (FIT) is simple:
you take a swab sample of your stool
to a lab, where it’s tested for blood
from the colon, a potential sign of
precancerous polyps or cancer.
Clinical research trials in Edmonton
and Calgary found FIT is the most
accurate screening test you can get. It’s
so effective that you will only need a
colonoscopy if you have a pre-existing
condition, a family history of the cancer
or if a FIT detects blood in the stool.
The Alberta Colorectal Cancer
Screening Program recommends using
FIT as your yearly screening tool,
increasing the chance of prevention
and early detection and decreasing wait
times for results.
— Amy Sawchenko
For more about FIT and cancer
screening, visit screeningforlife.ca.