Anesthesiologists in British Columbia say the waiting list for medically necessary surgeries has grown to more than 85,000 patients.
The B.C. Anesthesiologists' Society says since 2002, surgical waiting lists have increased by about three times the growth rate of the provincial population.
The society says its research up to the end of the 2018 fiscal year shows about one-third of those who require surgery have been delayed longer than the benchmark limit.
CEO Dr. Roland Orfaly says the purpose of a discussion paper released Tuesday is to signal that anesthesiologists want to work with the government and other health-care providers to find solutions.
The society represents 400 specialist doctors who work at every major hospital in the province and care for about 300,000 surgical patients every year.
The Health Ministry was not immediately available to comment.