Emergency waiting time is well below mandatory level

New figures for the April-June quarter show Gosford Hospital is only treating 56% of emergency patients within four hours, falling short of the mandatory 81% required by the National Emergency Access Target.

Combined with Wyong Hospital’s 68%, the Central Coast has one of the State’s longest waiting times. Overall, the data shows patients on the Central Coast are waiting longer than anywhere else in the State for emergency surgery. Emergency patient admissions at Gosford Hospital have also risen from 14,267 to 15,043 over the past year – leaving hospital staff to deal with more patients at a time when funding is in decline. “The region’s hospitals are being left to flounder under a growing burden of emergency patients while attracting no additional funding”, said Deputy Opposition Leader and Shadow Minister for the Central Coast, Linda Burney. “Gosford Hospital is at breaking point thanks to budget cuts – and Wyong is also struggling.” Ms Burney was joined by Labor MLC for the Central Coast Mr Greg Donnelly and Labor Candidate for Wyong Mr David Harris in a visit to Gosford Hospital on Monday, September 8. Mr Harris said: “The Baird Government has cut $3 billion from NSW hospitals since coming to office – and the recent Abbott budget has cut $15 billion more over the next decade.” “Mike Baird failed to get that funding back from the Commonwealth and the effects are being felt at hospitals across the Coast. “I’m concerned that our hospitals on the Central Coast are failing to meet the 81% target by a significant margin. “Our doctors and nurses are outstanding, it’s clear the blockages in our emergency departments come down to a budget issues. “Local hospitals are under-resourced and families and pensioners on the Central Coast are the ones suffering.” Greg Donnelly added: “Gosford Hospital is the main hospital on the Coast and it’s shocking to see it has the slowest emergency department in the State.” “It makes no sense that the Liberals want to introduce a $7 GP copayment that will cause thousands of additional people to seek out hospitals instead of the GP. “This will only make the crush at places like Gosford and Wyong even worse,” said Mr Donnelly. Member for Gosford Mr Chris Holstein has criticised Labor for scaremongering the community about the performance of Central Coast hospitals. “I can assure the community there is no $3 billion cut to health – this is a Labor fabrication”, Mr Holstein said. “The Central Coast Local Health District budget has increased by 6.4% this year to a record $693 million. “The facts speak for themselves – Gosford Hospital has made improvements in both emergency and elective surgery, despite a 5% increase in patients attending the hospital in the last year. Mr Holstein said under Labor in April-June 2009, Gosford Hospital’s emergency department four hour benchmark performance stood at 48% compared to the 56% recorded in April-June 2014 under NSW Liberals and Nationals. “I’m pleased to say 96% of surgeries were performed on time at Gosford Hospital in April-June this year,” Mr Holstein said. “The NSW Liberals and Nationals Government has committed almost $3 million this year to begin the major redevelopment of Gosford Hospital – a project anticipated to be worth more than $350 million. “Clinicians and the community have been crying out for enhanced health services at Gosford and the NSW Liberals and Nationals have listened. “The new Gosford Hospital will be a facility the people of the Central Coast can be proud of. “I’m incredibly proud of the work being done at Gosford – our doctors, nurses and hospital staff are treating more patients than ever before but still making improvements. “I thank them for their commitment to delivering first-class care for our community,” Mr Holstein said.

Media release, 8 Sep 2014
Chris Holstein, Member
for Gosford
Media release, 8 Sep 2014
Linda Burney, Deputy
Opposition Leader and
Shadow Minister for the
Central Coast