Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Wait Times

What is the wait time to have a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan?

Due to unpredictable staff shortages, you may need to wait longer than the times posted below to have an MRI.

On average, you can expect to wait:

Emergency patients:  Done immediately
Urgent patients:  21 days
Semi-urgent patients:  130 days
Non-urgent (or routine) patients:  103 days

Timeframe: as of March 31, 2024

What are the wait time targets for MRI tests?

Emergency patients:  Within 48 hours
Urgent patients:  Within 14 days
Semi-urgent patients:  Within 28 days
Non-urgent (or routine) patients:  Within 84 days

Wait time targets are based on data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information.

How is the wait time measured?

The wait time measured is from the date your MRI request is received until the date your MRI is performed.

This does not include the wait time from your visit with your physician and the referral received for an MRI scan. 

This chart displays the wait time measured as being from the date your MRI request is received until the date your MRI is performed.

What influences a wait time? 
Your wait time may be influenced by:

  • demand for service;
  • resources;
  • your own request or cancellation of an MRI scan;
  • vacation/time-off; or
  • holidays.

What is the wait time data?

What other information is available?

For more information about magnetic resonance imaging, visit Diagnostic Imaging Services or the Canadian Association of Radiologists website.

Published date: 
May 10, 2024
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