The think tank released its latest study on wait times Thursday, saying the median wait times across the country this year was 21.2 weeks - the longest ever recorded in its two decades of tracking.
It says Ontario reported the shortest total wait at 15.4 weeks while New Brunswick reports the longest at 41.7 weeks.
It found wait times in B.C. had climbed for the fifth year in a row, said Fraser Institute associate director of health policy studies Bacchus Barua.
But the Canadian Institute for Health Information says the medically acceptable wait time for a hip or knee replacement is 26 weeks and more than 70 per cent of Canadians receive treatment within that time frame.
Research indicates the median waiting time is now sitting at 21.2 weeks, which is a 128% jump from when the survey first started back in 1993, when it was just 9.3 weeks.
Approximately 2.9 per cent of Canadians were waiting for treatment in 2017, the study says.
The institute uses provincial and territorial data and focuses on priority areas set out by the 2004 Health Accord, including cancer, cardiac disease, diagnostic imaging, joint replacement and sight restoration.
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Between 2012 and 2016, wait times for hip and knee replacements remained relatively stable, whereas wait times increased for cataract removal and decreased for hip fracture fix, the report says.
However, Dix said wait times worsened over the past five to seven years under the previous B.C. government and he is working on solutions with doctors and health authorities. Medical oncology had the shortest wait times, at 3.2 weeks.
Bruce Macfarlane, a New Brunswick health department spokesman, said the province makes surgical wait time data available on a website.
Ontario's government will invest $1.3 billion in additional funding over the next three years to reduce wait times, said David Jensen, a health ministry spokesman.
Health Canada spokeswoman Tammy Jarbeau said the Canadian institute's research shows Canada continues to perform well on median wait times for priority procedures compared to other Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development countries.
However, surgical demand continues to increase and jurisdictions will be challenged to meet benchmarks, Jarbeau said.
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