Manitoba to deliver major improvements to spinal care with $12M program

The province says it intends to shorten wait times for assessing and operating on spinal issues faced by Manitobans.

Health Minister Uzoma Asagwara, along with Dr. Ed Buchel, surgical lead at Shared Health, announced a new $12-million spine program Tuesday, which includes a 50 per cent bump in surgical slates, plus new equipment, improved clinic access and more.

The goal is for the surgical slates to be added to the calendar beginning as soon as May 1.

Health Minister Uzoma Asagwara announces a new Manitoba spinal program from Health Sciences Centre in Winnipeg. Randall Paull / Global News

“Manitobans should not have to suffer from debilitating spinal pain. It can completely disrupt every aspect of a person’s life,” Asagwara said.

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“The creation of a new provincial spine program will reduce wait times for both patients awaiting consultation and those needing surgery, ensuring Manitobans receive treatment more quickly so they can resume their lives.”

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Manitoba has also recruited three additional spinal surgeons in recent months, with two set to operate out of Winnipeg and one in Brandon, thanks in part to support from the Health Sciences Centre Foundation’s Operation Excellence campaign.

“The spine care team will now have the central intake and improved data analytics to manage wait-lists and optimize the use of the increased and enhanced capacity,” Buchel said.

“More surgeons, in co-ordinated clinics, will deliver more surgery with cutting-edge technology.”

Click to play video: 'Manitoba to deliver comprehensive spinal surgery waitlist'

Manitoba to deliver comprehensive spinal surgery waitlist

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