The latest report is out on elective surgery waiting periods in the WA public system, and regrettably it’s not pretty.
According to this article posted on thewest.com.au today, WA public patients are now being forced to wait longer than ever simply to find out if they need surgery.
Some of the key findings within the article were:
- Almost 80,000 West Australians are waiting to see a public hospital specialist to find out if they need surgery. 79,517 patients who need to be assessed for surgery were waiting for their first appointment. That's almost 10,000 (14%) more than at the same time in 2016.
- The official elective surgery waiting list, which GP's routinely refer patients who might need surgery to has more than 22,000 people.
- The average surgical outpatient wait across Perth tertiary hospitals is 8.8 months, an increase of 1.3 months since December 2016.
- The waiting list at Fiona Stanley Hospital is staggering, with 25,541 patients facing an average wait of just over 12 months for their first appointment, while 26,006 are queued at Sir Charles Gairdner and waiting an average of 10 months
- Australian Medical Association WA president Omar Khorshid said the figures were further evidence of the enormous strain that hospitals were under. We’re not keeping up with demand, and every indicator for emergency departments and elective surgery and now outpatient clinics are pointing to a worsening situation,”
In contrast, WA patients who hold private hospital cover are usually treated immediately following consultations with their specialist. So whilst nobody likes to think about themselves, or their loved ones, falling ill or needing healthcare, it's hard to ignore these alarming statistics. To learn more about HIF Hospital policies, visit our Hospital Cover comparison table.
Source: The West Australia