Voluntary versus involuntary waiting for joint replacements: new Alberta wait times rules for hip and knee arthroplasties, with provincial consensus

Healthc Q. 2012;15(3):37-42.


Despite various health system improvements across Alberta, the wait times benchmark was not being met for all patients requiring hip or knee arthroplasty. Alberta Health Services Bone and Joint Clinical Network working groups, in collaboration with other provincial organizations, gained consensus on the development and implementation of a set of provincial Wait Times Rules. These rules standardize the definition and measurement of data elements specific to joint replacement and distinguish between voluntary (patient-related) versus involuntary (healthcare system-related) wait times. Collectively, this information will help identify trends in wait times and more accurately show where wait times can be reduced.

MeSH terms

  • Alberta
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Hip*
  • Arthroplasty, Replacement, Knee*
  • Benchmarking / methods
  • Consensus
  • Data Collection / methods
  • Health Care Rationing / standards*
  • Health Care Rationing / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Reference Standards
  • Regional Health Planning / standards*
  • Regional Health Planning / statistics & numerical data
  • Waiting Lists*