17 November 2020

Better access to health care services and new and improved hospitals will be delivered for the people of NSW with more than $29 billion in funding committed as part of the 2020-21 NSW Budget.

The budget will see almost $3 billion in health capital works delivered in addition to recurrent funding of more than $26 billion, taking the total 2020-21 health budget to more than $29 billion.

Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the investment would continue the NSW Government's record infrastructure program, ensuring that the 29 new and upgraded hospitals and health facilities announced prior to the 2019 election will commence before March 2023.

"We're investing in the health of our people and building a better NSW with our futurefocused budget supporting patient-centred care, while allowing us to change how we deliver healthcare, with new technologies and modernised facilities," Mr Perrottet said.

Minister for Health Brad Hazzard said health spending accounted for almost one-third of the NSW Budget, which demonstrated the NSW Government's commitment to world-class health services for communities across the state.

"Since March 2011, recurrent funding for the NSW public health system has increased by almost $11 billion, up from $15.5 billion in 2010-11 – a 70.8 per cent increase," Mr Hazzard said.

Key highlights of the 2020-21 NSW Health Budget include:

  • $1.6 billion in 2020-21 to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic including:
    • $500 million for activities including support for COVID-19 clinics,quarantine arrangements and increased pathology testing and contact tracing
    • More than $458 million to fast track elective surgeries, focusing on surgery delayed by COVID-19
    • $385 million to provide additional personal protective equipment
    • More than $66 million to support mental health and wellbeing including additional mental health clinicians and peer workers, expanding the Police Ambulance and Clinical Early Response model, enhancing therapeutic activities in inpatient units, increasing capacity and responsiveness of the Mental Health line and expanding virtual mentalhealth services  and
    • $20 million to fast track state-wide research and clinical trials to tackle the global COVID-19 pandemic and reduce its impact on the community
  • More than $66 million over three years beginning in 2021-22 to continue the additional specialist mental health clinicians to significantly enhance the capacity of community mental health services to appropriately manage mental health clients in the community
  • Almost $56 million over four years to enhance end of life and palliative care, including 5,000 additional non-clinical End of Life Support, specialist allied health professionals, education and training as well as improved bereavement and psychosocial support services
  • Almost $50 million in 2020-21 to give patients access to innovative new cell and gene therapies and advanced therapeutics that provide world leading, lifesaving treatments. These include CAR T-cell therapy for children and young adults with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia, adults with diffuse large B-cell lymphoma; gene therapy for a blinding eye disease; monoclonal antibody therapy for children with neuroblastoma; and services to support gene therapy for children with spinal muscular atrophy
  • Almost $21 million in 2020-21 towards Ambulance emergency telecommunications
  • $17 million to pilot a package for in-home care for pregnant women suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum (severe morning sickness)
  • More than $10 million over four years to fund Tresillian and Karitane to extend virtual residential parenting services
  • $10 million over four years to plan and undertake a NSW stroke ambulance pilot project to support the rapid diagnosis of strokes and facilitate early access to appropriate treatment pathways; and
  • More than $7 million over four years to establish a drug and alcohol treatment centre in Dubbo, providing an eight-bed detoxification unit and a 15-bed residential rehabilitation service to address substance use issues.

Hospital upgrades and redevelopments include more than $91 million for the new Tweed Hospital, an additional $320 million for the Shellharbour Hospital and $450 million to bring forward the Nepean Stage 2 redevelopment by two years.

Hospital upgrades and redevelopments in progress include Westmead ($832 million), John Hunter ($780 million), Liverpool ($740 million), Randwick ($778 million), Campbelltown ($632 million), SCHN Westmead Stage 2 ($619 million), Tweed (now $673 million), Nepean ($550 million), New Maitland ($470 million), Wagga Wagga ($431 million), Shellharbour (now $699 million), Concord ($341 million), Lismore ($313 million), Griffith ($250 million), and Dubbo ($241 million).

Between 2012 and 2020 the NSW Health workforce increased by 20,659 full-time equivalent (FTE) staff, or 20 per cent, to 122,538 FTE. Of this, the workforce in rural and regional areas increased by 7,502 FTE or 20.6 per cent to 43,928.