Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

1 August 2019

Sarah Courtney, Minister for Health

Implementing solutions to improve our health system

The short-term actions identified in last month’s Access Solutions Plan have all been met and it is clear that they are driving better care for patients.

These actions included the immediate actions of establishing the Private Hospitals Working Group, improving access to data, and establishing the new Length of Stay Committee.

The Hodgman Liberal Government is focused on delivering more collaboration, empowering our staff, and improving engagement across our health system.

The Access Solutions Meeting, which was held in June, brought together more than 50 crucial health stakeholders, representing a broad cross-section of the system and featuring some of our best health system thinkers, clinical leaders, health consumers, key decision makers and departmental experts.

This resulted in 23 actions being established and divided into immediate, short-term, medium-term and long-term.

Highlights from the short-term actions included:

  • The Decision-to-Admit Authority for ED Consultants, which is now in place, bolstered with ‘one-way referral’ and ‘no right-of-refusal’ policies, which is driving improved patient flow so that patients can be admitted to other wards or units sooner;
  • The first of a series of Access and Flow staff engagement forums has been held, allowing staff to discuss problems and barriers and share ideas and solutions; and
  • A Cultural Improvement Plan has been designed for the THS, which is a key component to breaking down longstanding cultural barriers within our organisation.

The Government has also received advice on planning for bed openings in K-Block, and the review of the THS structure. We will consider this advice carefully and will have more to say on that in the near future.

I am fully committed to implementing these actions. There is still a lot of work to do and the Department will continue working through this with my full support.

The Hodgman Liberal Government is focused on delivering our plan to build a better health system for all Tasmanians.

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