State Member for Caloundra Mark McArdle today said Labor’s own Budget Papers show it continues to fail to provide timely treatment in public hospitals across the Sunshine Coast.

“The 2019/2020 Health Budget Papers for the Sunshine Coast region show a dismal result by Labor for Coast residents,” Mr McArdle said.

“The papers reveal a number of failures including:

  1. Treatment times in our Emergency Departments

  2. Elective Surgery patients treated on time

  3. The percentage of Specialist Outpatients waiting within the clinically recommended time to be assessed to establish if they need surgery, and

  4. The actual number of patients who received elective surgery.

“These are basic yardsticks to gauge how effectively our public money is being spent and the impact that spend is having on the health of Sunshine Coast residents.

“The reality is Labor has failed on many of these questions with the loser being Sunshine Coast residents.

“Steven Miles continues to trumpet record budgets and more staff, yet the budget papers say our results are not improving. It is not the quality of the medical staff that cause concern, it is the malaise in Miles’ office and increased bureaucracy that stop people seeing a doctor or nurse.

“You can spend as much as you like but it is the outcome that matters and it is the outcome that is so poor here on the Coast.

“The figures (below) point to a bleak picture in many areas; some of the ‘lowlights’ include:

  1. Only 68% of Category 2 and 61% of Category 3 patients were seen in our Emergency Departments on time. In fact they could not even manage to treat all Category 1 patients on time. These are the most seriously ill or injured.

  2. Only 87% of Category 1, 78% of Category 2 and 86% of Category 3 Elective Surgery patients were treated on time. Delayed treatment compromises outcomes.

  3. Only 64% of Category 1, 43% of Category 2 and 78% of Category 3 Outpatients were waiting within recommended times to be assessed to see if they required surgery. Patients need certainty, and delays can cause complications and anguish.

  4. Of 9,179 Coast residents who should have had Elective Surgery in the 2018/2019 year only 7,251 got it, almost 2,000 less than the target.

“Let’s remember the $1.8billion Sunshine Coast University Hospital opened in March 2017 – a period of over 2 years ago. What do we have to do to get the services we need?

“Labor are supposed to be operating a world-class hospital and we were promised it would not open until it was fit to run. These figures again condemn Labor’s ability to run a sophisticated medical service,” Mr McArdle concluded.

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