eReferral Update: Wait Times are Published, Early Results Show Fewer Unnecessary MRIs

Ocean eReferral NetworkThe Ocean eReferral Network (OEN) makes it easy to find healthcare providers, send secure patient referrals, and track the status of referrals, right from your EMR. By sending referrals through Ocean, clinicians can eliminate paper and faxes, reduce errors and rejected requisitions, and provide better access to care for their patients.

With over 140,000 eRequests and eReferrals sent to date, the OEN is the fastest growing electronic referral solution in Canada today. This month, we’re excited to share some early results from our partners, along with new feature updates.

Introducing Wait Time Data

Using aggregate data gathered from referrals flowing through the network, Ocean now calculates wait times nightly to provide the most up to date, publicly available information about health care providers accepting eReferrals. In the Waterloo Region, this now includes a broad range of diagnostic imaging wait times. To learn more, visit our wait time announcement.

Largest Directory of Healthcare Providers in Ontario

Each week, more and more healthcare providers are adding, claiming, and updating their listings on the Ocean Healthmap. With nightly syncing to the CPSO’s Provincial Provider Registry (PPR), Ocean provides the most comprehensive, open directory of healthcare providers in Ontario. This searchable, map-based directory is available at no cost, allowing healthcare providers to search and locate specialists and healthcare services by location, subspecialty and wait time information.

Early Results Released

In the past year, the System Coordinated Access Program – along with Think Research, the Centre for Effective Practice, and CognisantMD – has supported the roll-out of Ocean in Ontario, helping to enable more appropriate referrals and faster access to health care services for patients. The early results have been impressive, including:

  • 95% of patients found eReferral notifications improved their experience
  • 90% of patients reported they were satisfied with the eReferral process
  • 80% of patients felt more informed about their care
  • 85% of providers using eReferrals were satisfied with their experience
  • 79% of providers believe that eReferrals improved communication between healthcare providers
  • The average wait time 1 for orthopedic referrals decreased by 30 days
  • The number of unnecessary MRIs was reduced by 12%

For the full details, see the scorecard below. We will continue to track, measure, and share the results of this innovative program as it expands over the coming year.

Are you interested in getting started with Ocean eReferrals? Sending eReferrals through Ocean is free. Email us at to learn more.

System Coordinated Access Program Scorecard for February 2019