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Delivering 106 More Beds and More Staff

25th May, 2017

Michael Ferguson, Minister for Health

The Hodgman Liberal Government is delivering more funded beds and more frontline staff to Tasmania’s health system.

While we are investing record amounts into health, opening more beds and employing more staff, we know there’s still a long way to go.

That’s why in the 2017-18 Budget we are providing the biggest ever health funding boost to open an additional 106 beds across the State, all designed to provide better health care for all Tasmanians and more timely access.

This significant investment will focus on addressing acknowledged Emergency Department pressures at all of our hospitals, with the second stage of our Patients First initiative rolling out, as well as opening even more new beds.

The 106 additional beds comprise the 50 new beds announced in March but only funded until 30th June this year.

This funding will now be continued in the coming Budget and across the forward estimates; plus:

  • John L Grove Rehabilitation Unit – 20 beds previously not funded for operation beyond 30th June this year;
  • LGH Ward 4D – an additional four beds, bringing the total number of beds opening to 19;
  • RHH Emergency Department – 10 beds; and
  • Hobart Repatriation Hospital – 22 beds.

Breakdown of beds by region

In the South we are funding a total of 59 additional beds. This will be made up of:

  • Roy Fagan Centre – 10 beds;
  • Hobart Private Hospital – 8 beds;
  • Royal Hobart Hospital Intensive Care Unit – 2 beds;
  • Royal Hobart Hospital Emergency Department – 10 short stay beds;
  • Hobart Repatriation Hospital – 22 beds; and
  • New Norfolk Hospital – 7 beds.

In the North, we are securing the future of beds once closed and mothballed by the former Labor-Green Government with Launceston General Hospital’s Ward 4D beds to stay permanently open, and extend from 15 to 19.

The Hodgman Government will also secure the future of the important John L Grove Rehabilitation Unit with 20 beds.

This facility has provided many Northern Tasmanians with an improved quality of life and will now continue to do so into the future.

On the North-West Coast we are permanently opening and staffing eight beds at the North West Regional Hospital, and the long term future of the Mersey Community Hospital has now been properly secured.

Since 2014 we have been steadily working to improve the system with increased investments and the One Health System reforms, which were widely consulted and strongly supported by all health organisations.

This Budget recognises that we don't believe the system is as good as it should be.

With the Budget back on track the Hodgman Government has been able to make this significant investment in beds and staff in the state.

We are getting on with the job, and delivering a health system all Tasmanians deserve, where others have failed.