Broken Hill Hospital’s performance continued to experience high demand and care remained relatively stable, according to the latest Bureau of Health Information data (January to March 2018).
Mr Ken Barnett, Broken Hill Health Service General Manager, said while the hospital saw a 7.2 per cent decrease in patients attending the emergency department from 5,348 people to 4,961, more people attended the ED by ambulance and there were more emergency presentations in the highest triage categories.
Mr Barnett said the time it took patients to be transferred from paramedics to the care of clinical staff improved compared to same quarter last year, rising from 95.9 per cent to 97.5 per cent. This result is above the state benchmark of 90 per cent.
In the elective surgery quarterly reports, 100% of urgent elective surgery patients underwent their procedure within the clinically recommended timeframe for category 1 patients of 30 days.
Mr Barnett said whilst there had been some increase in the time for treatment to be commenced, the Emergency Department’s performance remains ahead of the state average. The hospital continuously reviews its results and looks at ways to continue to improve our performance. While less urgent presentations to our emergency department has declined compared to last year there are still patients coming to hospital emergency department for non-emergency reasons who could receive treatment more appropriately by accessing services such as their General Practitioner or local pharmacy.
Mr Barnett said Broken Hill Hospital performed well on elective surgeries, with 266 elective surgical procedures performed in the hospital, a slight increase on the 256 procedures performed in same quarter previous year.
The median waiting time for elective surgery categories were relatively stable and in line with similar hospitals, statewide:
- The urgent category was unchanged compared to the same quarter last year, at a media wait of 13 days.
- Median waiting time for semi-urgent cases was 52 days (a 2 day decrease).
- Non-urgent category recorded 216 days (a 41 day decrease).
The NSW Government is investing a record $15.3 billion in acute health services in NSW this year, including $36 million for growth in emergency care services and $227 million for more inpatient hospital services. An additional $3 million will deliver more cataract removal, hip and knee replacement surgeries.
The NSW Government has also committed $30 million to the Broken Hill Health Service Redevelopment which includes major work in the Broken Hill Hospital to the Ambulatory Care services. This will create a direct access and purpose built cancer care treatment space and consolidate three waiting and reception areas (allied health, primary health and specialist clinics) into one integrated reception point for non-admitted services.