A survey was conducted to assess practice conditions in Atlantic Canada for 1996.
Otolaryngologists in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland/Labrador with at least 1 year of practice experience in the area were canvassed regarding general work concerns, office and OR waiting lists, income, support services, job satisfaction, future plans and personal recommendations for improvement. Nineteen of 40 surveyed responded (47.5%).
The results revealed that Atlantic Canadians had to wait considerably longer than average Canadians for ENT services. This was particularly true for Nova Scotians who had to wait often more than double the national average. Forty-seven and a half percent of practitioners were dissatisfied with the practice climate, with many merely trying to maintain status quo. Increasing government constraints and budget cuts have led to practice protectionism and the loss of collegiality. There is little optimism for the future, with 42% predicting continued deterioration in the next 5 years. As a result, up to 58% are considering relocating elsewhere.
Despite diminishing returns, these specialists continue to provide the best possible care for their patient patients--hoping for a better tomorrow.