An annual health survey in Canada reveals that thousands of patients unnecessarily underwent surgery in 2008 costing more than $150 million.
The study, carried out by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI), added that a large number of patients do not receive the correct or the most cost efficient treatment. Some of the unnecessary treatments conducted across the country include caesarian section deliveries, hysterectomies or knee surgeries.
The CIHI's vice-president of research and analysis, Jeremy Veillard revealed that such surgeries occur at a varying rate from region to region and said that they cannot be always attributed to differences in health in various regions.
John Wright, CIHI president and chief executive officer, said that it is difficult to pinpoint the exact cause of why such surgeries take place. ""We don't know in every circumstance why (these surgeries are) being done. Sometimes it reflects the education or background of the physician. It can reflect the experience of the surgeon or patient preferences and recognizing pre-existing conditions", he added.