06 June 2018
NSW hospitals care for more people in emergency departments and performed more elective surgeries than any other January to March quarter on record, according to the latest Bureau of Health Information report.

The BHI Hospital Quarterly for January to March 2018 found 714,101 people presented to NSW emergency departments, up 1.6 per cent compared to the same time last year, and 52,717 elective surgery procedures were performed, up 1.7 per cent.

NSW Health Deputy Secretary Susan Pearce said Western Sydney public hospitals in particular performed at a high standard while facing record demand.

“Despite a 5 per cent increase in presentations in Western Sydney, up to 47,675 people, the performance of emergency departments at Blacktown, Westmead, and Mount Druitt was excellent,” Ms Pearce said.

  • The percenta​ge of patients who were seen, treated and left ED within four hours was up 12.3 percentage points to 71.2 per cent
  • The tim​e taken for ambulance patients to be transferred from paramedics to hospital staff within 30 minutes improved by 3.9 percentage points to 94.2 per cent

Ms Pearce said while less urgent presentations to our emergency departments have declined compared to last year there are still patients coming to hospital emergency departments for non-emergency reasons who could receive treatment more appropriately by accessing services such as their General Practitioner or local pharmacy.

Across the state, many benchmarks remained stable.

  • 154,876 patients arrived by ambulance, up 3.4 per cent, and of these 92.1 per cent, were transferred from paramedics to hospital clinicians within 30 minutes, an improvement of 0.6 percentage points, and above the benchmark of 90 per cent.
  • 74.4 per cent of patients spent four hours or less in the emergency department, a 0.6 percentage point improvement.
  • Across NSW, the percentage of emergency department patients whose treatment started within clinically recommended timeframes was 76.2 per cent, 0.5 percentage points better.

The NSW Government is investing a record $21.6 billion in Health representing an almost $1 billion increase over the 2016-17 Budget. This includes $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.​