Metro Vancouver Residents Can Access Live Emergency Department Wait Times at Local Hospitals

Sprained your ankle and wondering how long it will take to see a doctor in the emergency department? If you live in Vancouver, Richmond or the North Shore now you can with the launch of the Emergency Department Wait Times Dashboard. It’s an online tool that allows residents to check average ED wait times at Vancouver General, St. Paul’s, Mount Saint Joseph, Lions Gate and Richmond hospitals.

The dashboard works by calculating the average wait time to see a physician for all patients who arrive at the emergency department in the preceding hour. These wait times are real time information that is updated every five minutes. Critically ill patients are excluded from the calculation because they’re always seen immediately. The dashboard also displays the time it takes for 9 out of ten patients who visit the emergency department to be seen by a physician.

That means if you have a non-critical illness, you can find out directly from the PHC site how long it might take for you to see a doctor at each location.

“This is a great example of how Vancouver Coastal Health and Providence Health Care are using technology to provide the public with valuable healthcare information,” says Dr. Eric Grafstein, head of the department of emergency medicine for the VCH-PHC region.

The first site of its kind in BC to use real time to identify wait times, similar emergency department dashboards are also available in Calgary, Edmonton and Kitchener, Ontario. The tool is also successfully used throughout the United States.

Check current wait times
Find out the current wait times at the closest Emergency Department.