Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

27 September 2019

Sarah Courtney, Minister for Health

Demand for health service showing continuing growth

The Hodgman majority Liberal Government is committed to building a better health system with more capacity to meet growing demand for services.

The latest Health Dashboard shows demand is continuing to increase at our hospitals, with more than 160,000 presentations to the state’s Emergency Departments during the 12-month reporting period.

The outpatients waiting list continues to experience demand pressure despite about 80,000 more appointments being delivered this year than in 2014-15.  There will be more than 550,000 outpatient appointments delivered in 2019-20 – over 10,000 appointments per week - with 50 new clinics now included in the outpatients waiting list that weren’t previously counted.

Outpatient waiting times also remain significantly below 2014 levels, in particular with the average category 1 waiting time now 45 per cent lower, or more than 100 days.

Importantly, the Government’s efforts to reduce elective surgery waiting times for the longest waiting patients is continuing to show results. In March 2014, the average non-urgent patient had been waiting 531 days more than clinically recommended, but in June this year that stands at 95 days – an improvement of more than a year’s waiting time, or an 82 per cent reduction.

There were also an extra 2000 ambulance dispatches in the latest 12 month reporting period, when compared with the previous update.

The Hodgman majority Liberal Government is committed to increasing our bed and staff numbers to increase capacity for this increasing demand, with the first 44 additional beds at the Royal Hobart Hospital to be opened on commissioning of K-Block, as well as the new in principle agreement with the Hobart Private Hospital that will also help to ease demand pressure.

More Media Releases from Sarah Courtney

More Media Releases from the Minister for Health