The last wave of the pandemic has presented new challenges in the retention and recruitment of registered Technologists and Sonographers. We have reached critical shortage levels which require the reduction of capacity across some outpatient services.
Patients who are referred for non-urgent imaging will experience extended wait times. We will continue to accept referrals, however appointments may not be provided until 7-14 days of available capacity and supply (i.e. Referrals will be waitlisted and patients contacted 1-2 WEEKS PRIOR to the appointment).
Current extended wait times are up to 6 months for:
- Non-urgent ultrasounds referrals (i.e. Screening for Hepatoma)
- Non-urgent (Priority 4) CT referrals (i.e. follow-up ground glass nodule in lung)
- Non-urgent (Priority 4) MRI referrals (i.e. lumbar back pain).
- Ontario Breast Screening Program (OBSP) and non-OBSP mammography screening
The WW hospitals are working together to equalize access across the region. Where capacity is available and redirect is appropriate, we are redirecting your patient for their exam across the WW hospitals.
As a result, your patient may be contacted to attend their imaging test at any of the Waterloo Wellington Regional Hospitals. If you have a preference for the specific institution, please contact the imaging department directly. Declining the option to redirect will result in longer wait times for your patient.
You will continue to receive radiology reports as you would normally.
What you can do for new referrals:
- It is imperative that detailed clinical history is provided on the referral as requisitions will be reviewed for priority and appropriateness for use of contrast. Please indicate if the referral is for known or query malignancy.
- Refrain from ordering multi-modalities for single indications
- In this time of critical shortages, we ask that you are diligent in assessing your imaging referrals for true urgency or priority.
- We encourage providers to explore alternate facilities offering shorter wait times, if appropriate.
- If your patient’s health condition changes before their scheduled examination, escalate the urgency of the referral by reaching out directly to the department.
- Continue to send your referrals to your preferred Waterloo Wellington Regional Hospitals.