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Services for People with Arthritis

This research aims to examine the volume of health care for people with arthritis and related conditions provided by physicians (e.g., rheumatologists, orthopaedic surgeons, primary care physicians) and rehabilitation professionals in Ontario. Much of the care for people with arthritis and related conditions occurs in the community and a number of different types of health care providers are involved in care delivery. Health system issues have emerged such as concerns about the appropriateness of referrals for specialist services, including rheumatologists and orthopaedic surgeons, and variation in access to specialist care. Rehabilitation services also play an important role in arthritis management and other ACREU research has demonstrated long waiting times for publicly funded physiotherapy and occupational therapy services, especially for chronic musculoskeletal conditions such as arthritis.

This research will be accomplished through analysis of routinely collected data from the Ontario Health Insurance Plan database and the Canadian Institute for Health Information’s Discharge Abstract Database. ACREU data from previous studies on rehabilitation services in Ontario will also be included.

The results of this research will help to inform the development of community based models of care for the management of chronic disease in Ontario.

This project is funded through the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.

Researchers: Mayilee Canizares, Crystal MacKay, Dr. Elizabeth Badley