The NSW public health system is world-class. It is the biggest public health system in Australia with 228 public hospitals and 114,000 dedicated staff (FTE) who make up the health workforce. Each year, NSW Health cares for millions of people and oversees investment worth billions of dollars in patient care, building, equipment, technology and research. 

However, health care is changing and so are the needs and expectations of communities, patients, and their carers. Increased demand, an ageing population and more people dealing with chronic illness such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer all mean new challenges for how services are funded, planned and delivered.

It is important to know that if you elect to be a public patient when admitted to a public hospital, you will not receive a bill for your stay. Your tax dollars contribute to meeting the costs of health care - it is your health system.

On a typical day in NSW

  • 66,000 meals are served to patients
  • 46,000 clinicians use the electronic medical record
  • 17,000 people spend the night in a public hospital
  • 7,400 people are seen by our emergency departments (EDs)
  • 6,300 people are admitted to a public hospital
  • 2,700 responses by NSW Ambulance
  • 1,160 patients have their surgery (emergency or planned) performed in our public hospitals*
  • 210 babies are born

Sources: Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2016 census; NSW Ministry of Health. Some figures are approximate.​

All figures o​n this page are based on the 2016-2017 financial year.​​​​​​​​​

Page Updated: Thursday 16 August 2018