This project set out to demonstrate that policy reforms could significantly reduce wait times and better serve patient needs. The Alberta Bone and Joint institute is a non-profit organization focused on developing a sustainable system of patient-centered bone and joint health care that is evidence based and efficient. This intervention was designed to streamline patient care across the complete continuum of care offered in Alberta, utilizing the known “best practices” uniformly in different regions, in order to create baseline standards related to access, wait times, clinical quality, resource usage, and health outcome measures. The purpose was to significantly minimize, and where possible eliminate all the current gaps and barriers to arthroplasty care
Alberta Hip and Knee Replacement Pilot Project: Scientific Evaluation Report – http://www.albertaboneandjoint.com/projects/arthroplasty/Hip%20Knee%20Scientific%20Report.pdf
This pilot project involved 3,400 patients who were waiting for a surgery date, waiting for consultation with an orthopedic surgeon due to hip or knee problems, or were newly referred by their family physician for a consultation. The patients were divided into a control group and a group to undergo hip or knee replacements through the intervention pilot program using the full gambit of patient care. Patients who were selected for intervention had better outcomes. For example, 85% were up and mobile on the day of their surgery, hospital stays lasted on average 4.7 days instead of 6 days, the wait to see a surgeon declined to 21 days from 145 and the wait for surgery fell from 290 days to 37.