Real Life Queueing Examples
Last Update: August 6, 2009.
Cut Queues And Win Business. 6th August 2009. Cost Sector online magazine.
How Fish Punish Queue Jumpers
Queueing for Toilets
There is an interesting article by Don McNickle on this subject available
QUEUEING FOR TOILET CARTOONS
Queueing for Toilets: Men vs. Women
The Windsor Star (June 6, 2008)
New Booths Mean Shorter Waits
Seven to open on Detroit side of Ambassador bridge and U.S. Customs
intends to staff them
By Monica Wolfson, Windsor Star staff reporter
Seven new customs booths on the U.S. side of the Ambassador Bridge should
make crossing from Canada easier this summer than last year, when border
delays were the worst since 9-11, border officials.
Last year, wait times into the U.S. in Detroit area averaged 24 minutes.
The Ambassador Bridge will open seven new car inspection booths for use by
U.S. Customs starting June 15, a bridge official said. The booth this
will be open during peak travel times, including on weekends.
"We see fewer backups Monday through Friday because that's generally when
the bulk of our commuter customers are crossing," said Skip McMahon,
spokesman for the Ambassador Bridge. "They know what to do and not to do.
On the weekends that's when we see day trippers. They're not quite as
well prepared, so customs officials take longer. The traffic volumes are
down, but the time frames are longer."
Unlike the truck customs booths that were recently built on the Canadian
side but never staffed by Canadian border guards, a U.S. official said the
booths will be occupied, but he wasn't sure of the timeline.
" Once the booths are operational, we'll staff them as needed," said
Ricardo Scheller, assistant director for border security for U.S. Customs
and Border Protection.
The Detroit-Windsor tuneel is landlocked and can't really expand its U.S.
"Starting in July, I've been assured by U.S. Customs this summer will be
significantly different from last summer in terms of delays," said Neil
Belinski, president of the Detroit Windsor Tunnel LLC. "I can't go into
He did say there will be more automated toll booths that accept credit
cards, expanded Nexus lanes and use of pass cards. "We look at the use of
technology to better use the space to accommodate safety and safely move
traffic," Belinski said.
Extensive delays into the U.S.- last year the wait was more than an hour,
50 to 70% of the time - have already been minimized at the Blue Water
Bridge, said spokesman Stan Korosek. He said he hopes the government
doesn't have to put portable toilets along Highway 402 as they did last
summer to accommodate motorists who stuck waiting to cross the bridge.
"We're working with our border partners to ensure (transit) of legal trade
and travel," Scheller said.
The Red Bull Air Race on Sunday was a special event that shouldn't be used
to judge efforts to have a smooth the border transition, officials said.
U.S tourists waited hours to return home.
"There were 150,000 U.S. people who went to the Canadian side [to view the
racer]," Scheller from the U.S. Customs, said. "Wait times were 65 minutes
on average. We were prepared for that."
Later this year the Ambassador bridge will also build four more truck
customs booths in the U.S. Plaza and is in discussions with U.S. Customs
to create special lanes for single occupant vehicles and other lanes for
high occupancy vehicles
"It should give customs some comfort that we've done a bit to separate the
vehicles before they get to the booths," McMahon said.
Travelers can also use credit cards at the automated toll booths in
addition to commuter cards.
While the U.S. works on improving its border wait times, Korosec said he
is also concerned about delays getting into Canada. "I'm concerned with
Canada Border Services staffing on the weekends," Korosec said of the
Blue Water Bridge situation. "On Memorial Day weekend there were one to
two hour delays getting into Canada. Not all the booths were open. So
far, after all the complaining we did about last year getting into the
U.S., I'd hate to experience that coming into Canada this summer."
Denny Yan, a spokesman for Canada Border Services Agency, said the
government recognizes the need for efficient trade and tourism.
"We respond to travel fluctuations," Yan said. "when appropriate the CBSA
assigns additional staff and resources due to increased volumes."
But delays could be the result of behind the scenes events, Yen said
"Border security is our number one priority," Yen said. "There could be
many things going on at any given time - an arrest or seizure. There
could be a delay behind the scenes. If they had eight booths open and
then theye were down to five, there's probably a reason for that."
Jumping the Queue: Brian Day is hardly alone
December 05, 2007
Glenn Baglo/CanWest News Service
Dr. Brian Day, head of the Canadian
Medical Association made headlines this week
when he admitted he jumped
the queue on a medical procedure for his daughter.
Dr. Brian Day, the controversial president of the Canadian Medical
has made his biggest headlines yet after an interview
on Monday with the editorial
board of the Ottawa Citizen. Dr. Day has
tongues wagging because he dared to mention,
and admit to using, one of
the hidden tiers in our "equal-access" health care system.
The orthopedic surgeon told the Citizen how he had taken his daughter, then five years old,
to a clinic for an examination after she experienced
a sudden pain in her leg.
Initial results suggested the presence of a
tumour. Dr. Day was told to "bring her back next week"
for a full CT scan
of the leg.
Your average, duty-minded Canadian might have accepted the
taken his child home to live in quiet terror of a cancer diagnosis for a
Dr. Day pulled strings at the hospital and had the scan done that day.
In his chat with the Citizen board, he also owned up to another occasion upon which
he used his influence with a friend to beat the queue for his own knee surgery.
On the crackling airwaves of talk radio,
much of the reaction to Dr. Day's confession seems to have revolved around whether
he can be considered "fit" to be head of the CMA -- as if the position were a
public sinecure, rather than merely the leadership of an influential lobby group.
As far as we know, sainthood is not one of the qualifications for the job. By admitting
to the presence and power of personal pull in our medicare system,
Dr. Day hopes to encourage more honesty from doctors and politicians --
almost all of whom have done exactly the same thing he did --and to bring about the
appetite for change. This is in stark contrast to
those who claim to love
our "single-tier" system of long queues for basic
procedures, and reject the
influence of money, but who hypocritically use
one of medicare's relief valves
-- patronizing a private clinic, stealing
across the border to take advantage of
the hated U.S. system, or using
one's authority or friendships to
queue-jump. At this point in history, well-heeled advocates of the "single -tier" seem
much like those who supported the bizarre sumptuary laws of early modern
jealously outlawed the wearing of certain luxurious fabrics
and items by the increasingly
wealthy mercantile classes. If you are an
upper-class Canadian whose doctor friends can be
trusted to help you out
in a crisis, you don't want them facing a large economic opportunity
for pushing you to the head of the queue -- which would be the case if all
middle-class folks were permitted to use their money to buy
the health care they want. And
you definitely don't want a system that
encourages maximum use of those doctors' work hours.
Otherwise, you won't
be able to get your physician golfing buddies to squeeze you in on short
And if you're a politician, of course you don't want people to be able to
faster access to care; it would devalue the currency of prestige
and power if some working-class
schmuck were able to get his hip fixed
before yours, just because he had saved up for it or
bought insurance. Why
trade in one's status as a miniature potentate vested with budgetary
powers of life and death for the lesser glory of being a mere customer?
most of us, we suspect, would love it if doctors and hospitals treated
us the way we are
treated at supermarkets or coffee shops -- as clients
rather than perpetual nuisances.
That Dr. Day appears to recognize this
fact -- and is so candid about the flaws and
hypocrisies that inhere to
Canada's current state-dominated system -- marks him as a
leading voice in
the debate over the future of Canadian health care.
Top doctor admits to queue-jump
December 03, 2007
No wait times should exist, CMA head argues
Kate Jaimet, CanWest News Service
Glenn Baglo/CanWest News Service
OTTAWA -- When his five-year-old daughter's bone scan revealed a tumour
that might be cancerous,
the man who is now president of the Canadian
Medical Association decided to jump the queue.
wife, also a doctor, had taken their daughter into the emergency room
of a Vancouver hospital
after the little girl experienced a sudden pain in
her leg, Dr. Brian Day recalled. The
initial bone scan indicated a tumour,
but couldn't reveal whether or not it was cancerous.
"The hospital said: 'We'll do a CT scan, bring her back next week,' " Dr.
Day said. "To me,
it's completely unacceptable, sending a mother home for
six days not knowing whether her daughter
has a malignant or a benign bone
tumour. I made the phone call ... I made them do it that day."
Dr. Day's experience is one example of what he calls the "parallel public
system," a system of
social connections that make it easier for people in
a certain class of society to get quick
access to medical treatment.
He admits he himself used the system when he needed knee surgery,
a long queue to get the procedure done within a week by a surgeon who was
also his friend.
It's not realistic, Dr. Day believes, to expect people not to use their
connections to jump the
queue when their own or their family's health is
What is realistic, he said, is to
eradicate medical wait times, so there's
no queue to jump and everyone -- no matter what their
social class -- can
get quick access to medical care.
"There shouldn't be wait times in a
country that's a rich country, that's
got a booming economy, that's got taxes going down," Dr. Day
said in a
meeting Monday with the Ottawa Citizen's editorial board.
And while he acknowledged
there would be an up-front cost to eliminating
wait times, he said patients on waiting lists
actually end up costing the
system more money because their condition deteriorates by the time
get to the front of the line.
"At all levels, waiting costs money," said Dr. Day. "If it
$10-billion dollars to get rid of wait lists, it's worth it."
An orthopedic surgeon,
Dr. Day worked in the public health care system for
20 years. He opened a private clinic in Vancouver,
the Cambie Surgery
Centre, in 1995.
He has proven an outspoken and controversial figure since taking
president of the CMA in August.
Dr. Day said Monday he wants to open up a public debate on
because politicians are too afraid to speak frankly about the subject.
all stripes want to sweep health care under the carpet,"
he said. "Any call for change in the system
is targeted as attacking the
'national identity' of Canada."
He said the first step toward eliminating
wait times would be to change
the way hospitals are funded.
In the current system, he said, each
hospital is given a lump sum of
funding. Any treatment given to patients is then taken out of that
sum, creating a negative entry on the balance sheets. Instead, he said,
hospitals should be given
money for each time they treat a patient. That
would give them an incentive to treat more patients, and
operating rooms busy instead of letting them lie idle.
"Fifty per cent of newly trained
orthopedic surgeons leave the country
within five years because they can't get operating time ...
system, the way the hospital is funded, where the patient is a cost, not a
value," Dr. Day
"The instant you tell hospitals you're going to get revenue for treating
they're going to start treating patients."
The change would result in more specialists staying in
Canada, and even
coming to Canada from abroad, he said. And with no wait times, Canada
attracting U.S. medical tourists, a multi-billion dollar
industry, Dr. Day said.
He added the
pay-per-procedure model has been successful in Britain, where
wait times have gone down to zero
since it was introduced in 2004.
But in an open letter to Dr. Day in August, a group of British
argued this model of funding, combined with more contracting out of
publicly funded services
to private clinics, have led to "a destabilized
and damaged public service" in the U.K.
in Britain's National Health Service Consultants Association
argued in their letter policy reform such
as those advocated by Dr. Day
has led to unnecessary hospital admissions and private clinics scooping up
contracts for quick, lucrative surgical procedures while leaving public
hospitals to provide low-paid,
day-to-day care to the chronically ill.
"Money has been lavished on politically sensitive wait lists for
surgery through expensive and unsustainable deals with the private sector.
This has been to the
detriment of many patients with more long-term
needs," the letter stated.
But Dr. Day said it was the
government's fault if it signed bad deals with
private-sector clinics, and examples of bungled contracts
the value of the funding model.
Besides the issue of wait lists, Dr. Day said a public debate
over what medical procedures should and shouldn't be funded by medicare.
He pointed out there are
many medically necessary treatments -- such as
physiotherapy, dental care, and drugs -- not covered by the
health care system.
This leaves about 30% of the population, who have no private health
in the underclass of what is de facto a two-tier system.
That raises questions about whether the current
system is fair, or whether
public funding should be allocated differently, he said.
As well, with an
ageing population demanding more high-tech medical
interventions -- and with new, and more expensive,
being developed such as gene therapy, stem-cell treatments and
nanotechnology -- Canadians will have to make hard ethical decisions about
what will and won't be
publicly funded in the future.
"You can't give everyone robotic heart surgery. It's impossible,"
However, Dr. Day wouldn't give an opinion as to what criteria should be
used to decide
which procedures receive public funding.
"We need to give [the public] the facts. You can't have
what do you want?," he said. "Those questions need to be asked of
not our role to dictate to them."
September 22, 2006
The National Post.
Lineups for non cancer surgeries grow
Researchers find resources being cannibalized to reduce cancer
By Tom Blackwell
As governments roll out high profile campaigns to cut waiting times for
patients needing other types of operations appear to be
suffering as a result, queueing up
longer for procedures such as gall
bladder surgery, warn the authors of a new study on the
The study, billed as the most comprehensive look yet
at delays in cancer
surgery in Canada, concluded waits to have malignant
tumors removed in Ontario more than
doubled in some cases between the
1980's and 2000.
The researchers and knowledge the trend
has been halted with much
publicized efforts to speed up cancer surgery, but say sparse human
resources are being cannibalized from other areas to do so, increasing
discomfort and endangering
the health of the non cancer patients.
The sense that things are improving here in Ontario is good
waiting for cancer surgery, but I think it's bad if you're waiting for
another kind of
surgery. Perhaps you're paying the price to get someone
else in, said Dr. Trevor Bardell a general
surgeon affiliated with Queen's
University in Kingston, Ontario, and coauthor of the study.
know it is necessarily more important to treat these patients at
the expense of others. It's something
that hasn't really been addressed in
the media or addressed by the government."
At Kingston general
hospital over the past year and a half, the average
waits for cancer surgery after diagnosis leveled off
at about 22 days as
new operations were added.
During the same period, waits for other surgery doubled to
about 60 days
on average from 30, said Dr. Paul Belliveau, vice president of the
hospital's medical staff
and past president of the Canadian Association of
General Surgeons. The same problem is occurring in virtually
province and the association has raised the issue with various provincial
health ministers and
the Canadian medical association, he said.
Part of the problem is a shortage of physicians and other staff,
means spending more money does not necessarily result in more operations,
Dr. Belliveau said.
suspects the money designed to produce additional cancer surgery is
ending up in a hospital general revenues,
helping offset large deficits.
Nonetheless, surgeons at his city's two hospitals came up with a plan to
trading rooms after hours and on Saturdays, with existing staff of
working extra shifts. But the idea was
rejected because of opposition from
the hospital unions, who complained it would result in an abuse of labor,
Some cancer specialists and administrators, meanwhile, say they have seen
no evidence that the health
care system is robbing Peter to pay Paul,
though they would not discount the possibility entirely. "That's not in
the spirit of what was intended," said Dr. John Irish, head of surgical
oncology at Toronto's Princess Margaret
Hospital, which specializes in
cancer treatment. "You should have your hernia repair or your gallbladder
just as timely a way. It would be disappointing to see hospitals,
in a sense, play games with taxpayers' money.
The wait times study by members of the Queen's University Division of
Cancer Care and Epidemiology examined the
Ontario Cancer Registry, which
records the experiences of the province's cancer patients with data from
regional cancer centres, pathology labs and death certificates.
Between 1984 and 2000, the lag between getting
diagnosed with cancer and
receiving surgery, if it was needed, jumped substantially across the
included an increase from 14 to 33 days for oesophageal
cancer, from 12 to 27 days for breast cancer and 16 to 33
days for cancer
of the larynx. The researchers found line-ups for radiation therapy grew
There is no
hard evidence to date that such delays will undermine
patient's ability to fight off a cancer, noted the paper,
recently in the U.K. based Journal of Clinical Oncology. But the backlogs
undoubtedly have other
negative impacts, experts say.
"The effect on the individual patient who must wait for treatment of a
life threatening illness remains simple," said the study. "Fear and
anxiety about the procedure persists, and the
perception that survival
chances will decrease with increased waiting time is near universal."
But, as in other
provinces the situation has changed in Ontario over the
past couple of years, with $63 million spent by this May
to generate an
extra 11,000 cancer operations, according to the health ministry. That has
begun slowly to reverse
waiting times, said Dr. Terry Sullivan,
of Cancer Care Ontario. Yet lineups for gall bladder, hernia and other
procedures are growing, Dr. Bardell and his colleagues say. And
bladder patients, for instance, can suffer serious complications if they
have to wait too long for surgery,
Dr. Irish said hospitals receiving spending increases earmarked for cancer
operations must agree
specifically not to draw resources from other areas.
Although there is a finite number of surgeons to go around,
they can be
made more productive by increasing their time in the operating room and
improving efficiency, he said.
Additional cancer operations were not meant to be a substitution for other
stressed Dr. Sullivan. "I'm not saying
it isn't happening,
but I haven't seen any evidence that it is happening."
QUEUEING AND FOREST FIRES
Spring 2006. See
MAY 2, 2007
NDP CONCERNED OVER GROWING BACKLOG OF REFUGEE CLAIMS
Number of claimants has
not increased but process time continues to
OTTAWA – Canada’s backlog of refugee claims
and immigration appeals has
almost doubled in the first quarter of 2007, creating frustration and
disappointment for many stuck in the application queue.
NDP Citizenship and Immigration Critic
Bill Siksay (Burnaby-Douglas)
said the backlog is an indication that the Conservatives are more
interested in partisan politics than fair service.
“It is unfortunate that many refugees are escaping
difficult situations, only to have their application sit piled high at
and Refugee Board (IRB), virtually neglected, and their
lor:#99ff99">life put on indefinite hold,” said
Siksay. “This is not acceptable.”
According to a Canadian Press report, an IRB spokesperson has confirmed
that the number of refugee claimants has not gone up significantly, but
the backlog created is due to
internal issues, particularly a large
number of vacancies in board members. Over one-third of the
IRB positions are vacant. The Minister of Citizenship and Immigration,
Diane Finley and the
government have been refusing to reappoint any
member originally appointed by the previous government and
slow to appoint new members.
On April 30, Diane Finley, Minister of Citizenship and Immigration,
finally announced four full-time appointments to the IRB. As of March
31, the effective backlog of claims
stood at 6,164 – up from 3,495 at
the end of 2006. During the same period, the number of adjudicators
available to hear refugee claims had declined while the average length
of time to process a claim rose to
12.6 months from 12.3.
“Re-appointments must be made urgently. This work must be done. Th
represented by former Board members, who have been
effectively doing the job, must not be lost to the
system. It is unfair
to have refugees wait up to a year, sometimes more, just to learn
whether they can start
a fresh, new lor:#99ff99">life in a safe and secure country
like Canada,” said Siksay.
Health Care Queues are Big News
April 6, 2007. by Andrew Mayeda, CanWest News Service. Ottawa:
TAMING OF THE QUEUE:
PM Unveils Patient Wait Time Guarantees: :
Opposition Critics Accuse Harper of Watering Down the Original
Election Promise: :
Prime Minister Stephen Harper declared victory on Wednesday in his
effort to extract health
care wait time guarantees from the provinces
and territories, but medical experts and opposition
the mission far from accomplished. :
Implementing a wait times guarantee
for patients was one of the
Conservatives' five priorities during the last election campaign.But
it has turned up to be a tough assignment for Federal health minister
Tony Clement, who has been
negotiating for months with thirteen
provinces and territories, which has jurisdiction over health care.
Harper announced Wednesday all the provinces and territories have
agreed to establish wait times
guarantees by 2010. "Today, I'm very
pleased to announce that minister Clement has succeeded in h
mission," and Harper told a conference on wait times hosted by the
Canadian medical association.
However, observers noted the agreement only guarantees timely
access to health care in
"at least one" of six priority areas: cancer
care, hip and knee replacement, cardiac care,
cataract surgeries and a primary care. In their 2006 election
the Conservatives promised to establish "evidence based"
benchmarks for all of those areas,
except a primary care.
Health care professionals reacted with cautious optimism. Chris
Simpson, a representative for the Canadian cardiovascular society,
called the agreement a
"significant step forward," but warned much
work must be done before patients can be certain of how long
wait for treatment. "We're nowhere near the point where we can say
"mission accomplished." This
isn't a George Bush thing where we say
this issue is done and we can move on. This is just the start."
Meanwhile, opposition critics accused Harper of watering down his
own regional election promise. "I actually
laughed out loud, because
it's the first time I've seen a politician make a public announcement
that he was
breaking a promise," said Liberal MP Bonnie Brown, the
parties health critic. "To me, this is just further proof
that he is
getting to have an election."
NDP health critic Penny Priddy said that Harper government has
to demonstrate a long-term Healthcare vision for the country.
SYSTEM ISN'T WORKING
campaigning for the election, whenever that will be. What we
need right now is a vision for health care. Wait
times are a symptom
of a system that isn't working."
Under the agreement, provinces can choose the area in
offer a wait times guarantee. Manitoba, for example, will offer
guarantees on radiation therapy, while
Saskatchewan will do so in
cardiac care, Clemente said Wednesday. The government will use
research based benchmarks
to determine how long a patient should
reasonably be expected to wait, he said. If the patient cannot
during that time, he or she can seek treatment in another
province through the public health care system.
D/D/1 System Vs M/D/1 System for Blood Donations.
(from U. of Windsor Daily News, March 17, 2006)
The Canadian Blood Service will hold a full blood donor clinic on Monday,
March 20, in Ambassador Auditorium in the CAW
Student Centre from 10 a.m.
to 4:30 p.m. For this clinic, the Canadian Blood Service will use its
It encourages donors to book appointments by calling
1-888-2DONATE (1-888-236-6283). Walk-in donors are still welcome
appointments will better accommodate donors' working schedules.
(posted December, 2005.)
From a business annual meeting with the president
available to the stock holders for questions
"To ensure that we
address as many people'’s questions
as possible in te time allotted,
please keep to a limit of two questions per participant. If you wish to
ask more questions, please re-enter the queue."
CALL CENTER SERVICE LEVEL
(from 2005 Revenue Quebec (Regie des reentes du Quebec))
If you call the Regie, the waiting tiem to speak with
an information clerk is 30 seconds in
75% of cases and you will never wait
more than 3 minutes. This is one of the Regie's commitments to
we respect it 95% of the time.
HEALTH SERVICES QUEUES
WAITING LISTS TO BE RATED.
(from The Windsor Star. March 24, 2005)
(Canadian Press: Saskatoon)
A total of 22 health organizations have combined
forces to create a list that will let patients know the maximum
can expect to wait for service.
Dr. John McGurran of the Western Canada Waiting List project explained the
idea at a recent meeting of the Saskatchewan Association of Health
He said one of the project's first
goals was to develop a scoring system
to assess urgency of patients already on medical wait lists.
"It's a novel approach,"
McGurran said, explaining that a num ber of
factors are considered before a patient is rated from 0 (least urgent)
100 (most urgent).
As a small measure of the project's success, the priority systems for
replacement and cataract removal surgery have been put into use
by the Saskatchewan Surgical Care Network.
In 2003, the Saskatchewan government also outlined a plan to have all
surgeries, including electives, completed within
The project was launched six years ago. And with several other health
accepting the projects proposals,
McGurrna says he
feels the groundwork has been laid to improve many aspects of Canadian
BORDER CROSSING QUEUES
EXTRA U.S. BOOTHS HALT TRUCK LINEUPS:
(by Dave Battagello, Windsor Star Border Reporter, Nov. 9, 2004)
PROVIDE SHORT TERM SOLUTION TO QUEUES
Four new U.S. customs booths added in
June on the Detroit side of the
Ambassador Bridge appear to have eliminated lengthy tuck lineups on
"This has been an excellent short term development put forward by the
said Steve Laskowski, assistant vice-president for the
Ontario Trucking Alliance.
on the U.S. side to get these booths opened and manned.
In the short term, it has really provided a
resolution to the queues,"
Bridge spokesman Skip McMahon said the end of the
truck lineup the past
few months can be explained by very simple mathematics. Bridge officials
determined that if U.S. Customs can clear 300 trucks per hour
then there are usually no lineups on the
bridge span and Huron Chruch
On average, a truck is cleared in about two minutes at primary U.S.
Customs inspection booths in Detroit, McMahon said. With nine lanes
previously, that meant about
30 per lane or about 270 trucks per hour,
which resulted in backups.
But since four new lanes
opened on June 23 - bringing the number of
primary booths to 13 - the number of trucks able to be cleared on
is 390 per hour.
With nine lanes, we were very close," McMahon said. "We knew we were a
booths staffed by U.S. customs away from moving this traffic.
"We always knew that we were never a new
bridge away from moving
traffic. That's why we moved to get these booths operating as quickly as
U.S. Customs has been staffing them. They are doing a great
job manning the booths.
Other things helping
to clear the jam include the border clearance
program FAST and additional front line customs officers added recently
the bridge, said Kevin Weeks, director of field operations for U.S.
Customs and Border Protection in Detroit.
The truck lineups have also disappeared despite a slight increase in
car and truck traffic at the bridge in the past month.
There were 535,368 car trips across the bridge in October - more than
18,000 above the 517,036 which crossed in October, 2003.
"There are still days when the customs throughput time is two minutes
ans 30, 40 and 50 seconds.
Then we see some minor backups." McMahon
"But since June 23, and until the U.S. election - with
levels of security - there have been no backups directly related to
throughput issues at U.S. Customs."
He cited a number of reasons for the few delays that have occurred -
including a computer problem at
U.S. Customs, a fuel spill, a couple of
car accidents, and a recent strike by Canada Customs.
MAIL QUEUE PROBLEM ON COMPUTER SERVER
Message from IT Services:
Last night (Dec 8, 2004), one of the
queues on one of the Domino server VENUS became corrupt. As a result, some
outgoing messages sent during
this period may have bounced back to the
sender with the error message "Error transferring to VENUS
Database is corrupt -- Cannot allocate space". The problem has been
resolved this morning as of 8:20 AM. Users are
advised to resend any
messages that bounced back with the error message listed above.
A CBC radio program indicated that there are 180,000 telemarketers in
Canada (with a population of 30 million).
Another radio program indicated
that telemarketers use multiple dialing so that they phone a number of
As soon as one answers, the other phones
still ringing are diconnected. This explains why we sometimes
receive phone calls
but when we answer there is nobody there.
SIGN IN A MEDICAL SERVICES OFFICE
test and time requirements for some procedures, patients may be called
out of sequence. (Bioscience Lab, Windsor, Ontario)
Arrests in New York City. 1993 article by Larson, Cahn, Shell.
A PHONE ANSWERING SYSTEM
A recent call to the University of Windsor registrar's
office gave the
"Thank you for calling the registrar's office. All of our agents are busy.
Please remain on the line. Thank you.
After one minute the message was
"Your call is important to us.
Please remain on the line."
This was repeated each minute until an operator answered.
Disney's FASTPASS (POOF go the long lines!)
(from a description on the DisneyWorld
Magic Kingdom Guidemap, as
received July, 2002)
Disney's FASTPASS is FREE and easy to use and cuts
the wait time on the
most popular attractions.
How does it work?
HOW OFTEN CAN I USE IT?
- Each member of your
party inserts his or her Park Entrance ticket into
FASTPASS stations at participating attractions.
- You'll receive a FASTPASS return time so you can go play in the
Park instead of waiting in line.
- Zip back to the FASTPASS return lane during your return time and
hop on the attraction with little or no wait.
You must use your current FASTPASS ticket OR wait two hours befor
another FASTPASS ticket for a different attraction.
WHERE CAN I USE IT?
Disney's FASTPASS is
now available at the following attractions:
BIG THUNDER MOUNTAIN RAILROAD, ...
Orlando Universal Studios EXPRESS
(from the Universal Islands
of Adventure Guide, received July, 2002)
Present your admission ticket at the
Universal EXPRESS Distribution Centers located adjacent to their respective
attraction entrances. Choose an attraction and receive an EXPRESS Pass to
return and ride with little or no wait
(anticipated wait 15 minutes).
Return to the chosen attraction at the time specified and present your
PASS to the attendant at the Universal Express entrance.
Guests may receive one EXPRESS pass at a time. You
may receive your next
Universal Express passes subject to availability and hours of distribution
- You have used your existing pass OR
- The one hour time slot to
experience the attraction has expired OR
- Two hours have passed from the transaction time printed at the
bottom of the pass.
Phone Mood Detector To Calm Irate Callers
Form the Windsor Star, July 9, 2002.
Angry callers who are
the time they have
fumbled through endless push button menus will be noticed
faster and sent to staff
who have conflict resolution skills, under a
new phone system developed in the United States.
Anyone who pushes too
hard at the phone keys, or speaks too loudly
or in a stressed tone, or uses swear words indicating anger
will be immediately
connected to an operator with a soothing
A patent for the technology was recently granted to a
subsidiary of a Canadian communication company called MITEL. The
technology is being developed at the same
time as speech recognition
technology is a response to increasing complaints about
automated systems used by companies to handle routine inquiries.
Crisis Plan Aims to Cut Truck Traffic.
The Windsor Star, p. A1.
July 3, 2002.
by Roseann Danese.
Mayor Wants Holding Area where Trucks would Await Bridge Access.
Mayor Mike Hurst says he will announce an emergency plan today
to deal with a traffic crisis caused
by U.S. bound trucks.
A meeting of the city's emergency team was held Tuesday to come up with
a solution for the hundreds of trucks clogging Windsor streets as they
wait to get on to the Ambassador
"I'm looking at some options that would get us out of an unbearable
situation that in
my opinion is a crisis."
Hurst has been discussing several ideas with local auto manufacturers,
including one that would have trucks heading to the U.S. diverted to a
holding area off Highway 401 while
waiting for clearance to cross
the Ambassador Bridge.
Such a move would avoid truck lineups along
city side streets and on
Huron Church Road. But the city is powerless to make such an order
on its own.
"The problem of course is that we do not have jurisdiction on the
401," Hurst said. We think the issue of somehow
marshalling - queueing -
international trucks in an orderly way makes a great deal of sense.
And of course, that
would have to be done somewhere outside the
corporate limits of the city of Windsor. "We don't have the
wherewithall to do that."
The city's emergency operations control group, comprised of
from the fire and police departments, ambulance service, health unit
and various other agencies, was
formed in the wake of Sept. 11.
After a meeting with that group Tuesday, Hurst notified officials from
the provinces emergency measures office, the ministry of Transportation,
and the federal office of emergency
preparedness something needs to
be done. Hurst said he will have a list of ideas today for the two senior
levels of government.
Among some of the simple solutions are the installation of signs
on the 401
directing trucks to stay on Huron Church Road and for the
province to inform trucking associations of the
Hurst will also be pressing the federal and provincial governments
to come up
with 1.2 million dollars that has been requested by the
city. The money, he said, is needed fro practical
includes installing streetlight traffic sensors to move trucking along
Huron Church Road.
"It seems to me as though I've got to do what I've got to do in order to
address a situation that is creating health,
and negative economic impact repercussions on a growing number of
Windsorites." Hurst said.
Patients Facing Delays
From the Windsor Star. Jan. 12, 2002. By Veronique Mandel.
Waiting lists for people needing cancer care are unacceptably
to be fixed, Cancer Care Ontario president Graham Scott said in Windsor
Unless a patient has a
virulent form of cancer, it can take from six to
thirteen weeks to get treatment.
We're not happy about this, because it
causes a lot of anxiety and fear
but we're really hampered by a lack of people to do the work," said Scott.
"We're trying to
develop better ways to track the waiting lists, and feel
confident that the regionalization project we're working on will
co-ordinate cancer services and help the waiting list problem.
Scott was in Windsor meeting with chief
executive officers from the
provinces nine cancer treatment facilities, including the Windsor centre's
Dr. Hakam Abu-Zahra. Ontario has the largest cancer organization in
the world, said Scott, and seven of Canada's
ten provinces have similar
but smaller centres.
Ontario has 400 radiation therapists, but needs another 62.
needs upwards of 16 more radiation oncologists to add to the 80 to 95 in
ong waiting lists, 1600 Ontario patients were being
treated in the United States, and another 600
were being shunted across the
province. About 120 of the 1600 patients were from Windsor. A $3000
cancer treatment in Windsor costs $20000 in the U.S.
In order to keep people at home, CCO opened
an after hours clinic in
Toronto focused on treating breast and prostate cancer; the two main
sending people out of the country. The clinic negotiated a
special agreement to keep treatment machines
running between 6 and 10 p.m.
and has effectively stopped travel to the U.S. and northern Ontario.
"We are treating 12% more patients than we were just one year ago." he
said. "We've hired 100 more radiation
therapists and 30 more radiation
oncologists, but it isn't enough."
Some aspects of long waiting lists
are not under the control of the
cancer centres, and are caused by backups and delays in getting
cancer scans. Scott says that a regional co-operative
network between all cancer centres, a closer partnership with
hospitals, and co-ordination with all medical services will go a long
way to reducing the wait and
hassle for patients.
"Our objective is to make sure that people in this province get cancer
care and treatment in
the most timely fashion and as close to home as
possible," Scott said.
Abu-Zahra says the Windsor
cancer centre has fine tuned its tracking
system to pinpoint when wait times are attributed to factors outside the
cancer centre, which allows them to make improvements in the system.
Another stress on the system is the fact that
the incidence and
prevalence of cancer is growing steadily with 50,000 new cases diagnosed
each year in the province.
In Windsor there are 2,500 cases annually.
Cancer Care Ontario operates on an annual budget of $280 million per
Ontario spends a total of $1.5 billion per year on cancer care.
Golfing Queues and Scheduling
From the Windsor Star, Jan 30, 2002. Page A1.
To the Speedy, tee times:
Tracking system rewards golfers who play
quickly. by Mary Agnes Welch
New made in Windsor
omputer software promises to weed out rude, slow, or
rule breaking golfers, says its designer, Nick Panasiuk, owner of Hydaeaway
The digital tracking system - DTS - made its debut at Hydeaway over the
weekend and will s
pread to other local golf courses later this year and
to Toronto by 2004, predicted Panasiuk.
It's designed to
enforce golf etiquette while luring speedy golfers who
usually avoid public courses over the weekend.
"Nobody wants to play behind a slow guy," said Panasiuk, who took
over Hydeaway from his dad last year.
"There are more players who don't
want to golf on Saturday or Sunday because of the slow players than there
They also serve who stand, wait
Monday, October 15, 2001
From Dispatch on Line
A new company is promising Britons the unthinkable: an end to
waiting in line.
tendency to form orderly lines, even at bus stops, is
legendary. Britain's first "queuing agency", Q4U,
promises to relieve busy
Londoners of the time-consuming need to stand in line themselves -- for a
"Figures show that we spend about a year of our lives standing in queues,"
said Patrick Young, a
director of the agency's parent company, 15 Minutes.
"Some business or individuals simply don't have the time to do
this, so we
give them the chance to pay somebody else to queue for them."
Young says the
agency charges R260 an hour and employs about 80
"professional queuers" who will line up for anything,
from passports to
The company recruits most of its staff from the ranks of the long-term
unemployed. "It's a job that doesn't require a lot of skill or experience.
All you need is plenty of
patience." -- Sapa-AP
WAITING IN LINE FOR FREE TICKETS IN NEW YORK
Date: August 6, 2001.
See article at
Blood Donor Clinics
From The University of Windsor Daily News, August 13, 2001.
"MORE DONORS THAN EXPECTED ATTEND CAMPUS BLOOD CLINIC
Canadian Blood Services collected
34 units at the donor clinic at the CAW
Student Centre last Wednesday. Although they tried a pre-registration
help people plan their donation time, only eight people set up
appoints before the clinic. Nevertheless,
45 people came through the door
to donate. That was more than the clinic was set up to handle."
Priority Queueing Example
The following is taken from an Ontario Hospital Association
document (Publication #283) (circa 1998)
Why are we waiting?
While no one enjoys waiting,
especially when you are anxious or in
pain, it is important to remember that when it comes to
"first come, first served" does not make good health care sense.
room teams are designed to ensure that those
patients in urgent need are treated first. Each year, this
saves many lives.
That's why emergency departments use a system called "triage"
which is designed to ensure the most seriously
ill patients are
seen first, even if they may come into the department after
you do. This means that the first
person you see in an emergency
room will probably be a "triage" nurse who will assess your
condition as quickly as
Up to 70% of all people who come to hospital emergency rooms
may not need emergency care.
By planning ahead, you can save
yourself time and anxiety.
Deaths On Heart Surgery Waiting List Jump to 55
From The Windsor Star, Feb. 28, 1997
Fifty-five people have died while waiting for heart operations in
Ontario in the last ten months, a
"significant" increase on previous
years that has experts worried.
A new study yet to be published concludes
that "excessive waiting
times" are a factor in such deaths, a spokesman for Ontario's Cardiac
Care Network said
The length of cardiac surgery waiting
lists in the province soared by almost 30 percent last year.
"We're obviously concerned that the death rate has increased,"
said network head Mark Vimr. "It's not a huge increase.
We don't want
to suggest this is alarming. But if it was someone I knew, it
wouldn't matter if it was just two more
U.S. Medical Care for Sale in Canada
[Canadian medical treatment is free to all
Canadians, but patients
may have to wait for long periods of time to get treatment.]
From the St. Catherines
Standard, St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada. July
Article by Sharon Kirkey.
"Roger Rickwood is in the
brokerage business, but its not gold shares
he's promoting, but new hip and heart bypasses.
Rickwood is a member of
the board of directors of Free Trade Medical
Network, a Toronto company selling discount no delay medical care
United States for Canadians who don't want to spend months on
waiting lists at home.
"FTMN can arrange a hip
replacement in an American hospital in
48 hours - if you or your employer is willing to pay $25,000. In
patients face waits of two years for a non urgent Ontario
Health funded hip replacement. A heart operation
will cost up to
$80,000, but for that price, you can get a bypass in a week, instead
of 3.5 months in a
Rickman says delays in the Canadian health system can mean billions
of dollars in lost wages
and disability payments for the Canadian
"Some Canadian doctors believe that hospital emergency
being hit with fallout of increased waiting times; the longer patients
wait, the worse their illness
becomes, and the more likely they are
to end up in emergency. Some patients are reportedly waiting so
long for diagnostic
tests such as MRI that the doctors are encouraging
them to go to emergency to try to jump the queue."
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Being `A Name' Expedites Care
From The Windsor Star: Oct.1, 1998.
By Tom Blackwell, The Canadian Press, Toronto.
are supposed to get equal access to health care.
But when it comes to heart disease, at least, a pop star,
player, or cabinet mnister is likely to get faster, more frequent
treatment than most.
Entertainers, sports figures, politicians - and other
doctors - are among those who can get preferential access to
services, concludes a survey of heart physicians and hospital
Patients who are
aggressive about theuir rights or seem inclined to
sue can also move up th line quickly, it says,
focused on Ontario, but the findings likely apply to all
of Canada, says the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences.
The VIP patients appear mostly on elective and non urgent waiting
lists and don't take precedence over urgent or
emergency cases, said the
Cardiac surgeon Dr. Hugh Scully, one of the country's foremost heart
acknowledged Wednesday that people do get red-carpet treatment
"from time to time."
"Every now and then you get a
request to (give someone speedier
service) and it may come from the hospital or it may come from the
Health Ministry," he
said in an interview. "But there is a resistance
to it (by treating doctors) and it does create some ill will."
Ontario Health Minister Elizabeth Witmer said she's concerned by
the findings and will do what's required to rectify the situation.
That will include pumping more money into cardiac services to
shorten waiting listes and reduce the demand for
treatment, she said.
"What we hope to achieve is equitable access for all people,"
said Witmer in an
"Everybody needs to be getting the care that is required within an
acceptable period of
Ontario's Cardiac Care Network which oversees the heart surgery,
will now look more closely at the
problem, siad Network spokesman
The survey got responses from almost 800 doctors and health
administrators. They were asked, from their own experience, whether
certain types of patients get preferential
treatment such as
faster service, more frequent care, or a choice of
Other MDs were mentioned by almost 95 percent of the respondents,
followed by publice
figures such as athletes, entertainers, and
media personalities (85 percent), politicians (83 percent), hospital
board members (78 percent), the heart doctor's own family or
friends (76 percent), hospital donors (58 percent),
(53 percent), and religious anthorities (36 percent).
TICKET MASTER LINE UP PROCEDURE
The following sign is posted outside of the Cleary Auditorium in
Windsor, Ontario (June 9, 1999). It gives details on a line up
procedure used by Ticket Master to stop the
practice of overnight
lineups. Two of the employees said that one of the other major
effects is that "scalpers"
are discouraged because they cannot
guarantee one of the first few spots by showing up ten hours
reason is that those who arrive first are not
necessarily those who enter first. This sometimes results in threats
and verbal abuse against the ticket sellers.
TICKET MASTER RANDOM NUMBER LINE
your safety and convenience, this ticket center will be using a
random number line-up procedure for all first day
This procedure is a fair and equitable method that provides each
customer with an opportunity to be
first in line without the need
for long hours of waiting in line or camping over night.
One half to one hour
before tickets go on sale, random numbers will be
distributed at the designated entrance. Once all the numbers have been
distributed, the line order will be announced and the line will form
Individuals arriving after the
line is formed will line up and be
sold tickets after those with numbers depending on ticket
number does not guarantee you a ticket, only a place in line.
Doctors Double in Bid to Halve Waiting Time
from The Windsor Star, June 29, 2000, page A3
article by Brian Cross, Star Health/Sciences Reporter
The terrible waits of six or more hours at Hoetle Dieu Grace
Hospital's emergency should be cut in half starting in September.
Thanks to an innovative contract worked out
between the hospital's
board and the emergency department doctors, two doctors instead of
one will be working during
the busiest eight hours each day, from 3 to
"I believe at the end of the year there will be fewer and
complaining about waiting five or six hours,"
said board member Antonio DeLuca, who suggested double
shifting more than
a year ago.
It's taken this long to recruit enough new ER doctors and work out an
that provides a salary like compensation instead of the current
fee-for-service OHIP payment that discourages doctors from
double up. The new system starts up in September.
Right now, waits at peak hours are long,
sometimes more than six hours,
said John Greenaway, the hospital's chief of staff. "Our patients don't
like that, our
staff doesn't like that , and our board doesn't like that."
He said emergency doctors are anxious to start the
new system, because
they too are frustrated with the long waits patients must endure.
"I'm (hoping) the wait will
be cut in half or better, during the busy
times of the day," said Greenaway.
But the system doesn't come without
financial risk to the hospital. What
it's doing is paying the 10 physicians about $2 million, and then recouping
by keeping the OHIP fees of $39 per visit. Currently, the
emergency sees about 43,000 visits a year - that would add up to
$1.7 million. The hospital is hoping that by improving service, it will
attract more patients. The break even point for
the hospital is 52,000
Currently between 3,000 and 4,000 patients get frustrated from waiting and
walk out of
the emergency room each year. Just keeping them from leaving
would bring the hospital $100,000.
"We should not have to
do this, but unfortunately, the OHIP fee schedule
works against us," said Gerry Trottier, the board's finance
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