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Hospital wait times decline despite increased demand

The latest AIHW report shows elective surgery average waiting times in Tasmania are the lowest they’ve been in five years.*

It also highlights an improvement for the longest waiting patients. In fact, Tasmania is now better than average and in the top four in the nation.#
This is driven by Tasmania having the highest per capita rate of surgery of any state or territory in Australia. This shows our additional funding for elective is working to reduce waiting times.

The latest data confirms Tasmania’s emergency departments have seen an increase in presentations, with 6,118 more people presenting last financial year.

While increased demand is being felt Australia-wide, Tasmania had the highest growth rate of any state or territory last financial year. Despite this, the median waiting time for ED care reduced slightly and the proportion of people seen on time increased slightly.

While the report does show an improvement in the number of people being admitted to hospital within four hours, at under 30 per cent this figure is far from acceptable and demonstrates there is a lot more work to be done.

It is exactly why we are working to open more hospital beds, to reduce bed block and treat more patients, sooner. read more…

Further improving the RHH Redevelopment

Due to increasing demand on our health system, the Tasmanian Government is making some important improvements to the Royal Hobart Hospital Redevelopment.

On advice from Royal Hobart Hospital clinicians and the Clinical Planning Taskforce, the Government has made the decision to dedicate the entire 10th floor of the new K-block tower at the RHH to create a single general medicine and respiratory medicine ward. By grouping a greater number of general medical and respiratory medicine beds together in one space, patients will receive care on one designated ward, instead of multiple wards. This is expected to result in reduced lengths of stay, meaning they can recover faster and be at home sooner.

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Encouraging more women and diversity in IT

The Hodgman Liberal Government is committed to encouraging and fostering innovation in the Science and Information Technology sector, and supporting workforce development and diversity in the ICT industry.

The Government is working with industry partners to develop a new Workforce Development Plan, with a particular focus on encouraging more women into the industry.

In the State Budget, we have committed $75,000 for this important initiative.

In its first meeting, the working group, which includes TasICT and the Australian Computer Society, has begun work on the plan in conjunction with Government agencies.

This Workforce Development Plan will not only create higher value jobs and encourage people to stay in or relocate to Tasmania to start businesses, but will further support the wider economy.

Closing the digital divide through the Digital Literacy Program

The Hodgman Liberal Government is committed to making sure all Tasmanians have equal opportunity to participate in the digital revolution.

The Government recognises that when Tasmanians are connected to digital services, they are healthier, safer, more productive and able to connect with local, national and OKinternational communities.

The 2018/19 Budget allocates $400,000 over four years to identifying ways to improve access and affordability to digital services, particularly low income households, older Tasmanians and people not in paid employment.

The Department of State Growth is currently working with other Government agencies, not-for-profit organisations and the private sector on a plan to enhance inclusivity for the most vulnerable, and to help close the digital divide, which will soon be rolled out across Tasmania.

The Government already provides all Tasmanians with the opportunity to improve digital capability through LINC Tasmania from more than 50 service points across the state.

LINC Tasmania, to become ‘Libraries Tasmania’ from July 1, oversees 20 Community Online Access Centres, which also provide computers connected to the internet for public access.

And of course, all Tasmanians can access free Wi-Fi via the Government’s Free Wi-Fi network, which has 69 locations around the state.

More than 500,000 users have accessed this service in over 1.3 million sessions since the first hotspot went live at Bridport in December 2015.

The Tasmanian Government will continue to deliver solutions to help close the digital divide in the community.

New Constables join Tasmania Police ranks

Tasmania police will welcome 19 new officers to their ranks today following the latest round of graduations.

The 12 men and 7 women will now take up their posts at stations in Hobart, Launceston, Devonport and Burnie.

With an important task at hand, these new officers will put their training into action and begin serving and protecting the Tasmanian community from next week.

In our last term, the Hodgman Liberal Government rebuilt police numbers to 1,233 after the Labor-Green Government sacked more than 100 officers.

Now, we have our sights on making Tasmania a safer place to live by recruiting a further 125 new front line police officers over the next four years.

Recruiting is ongoing for the next scheduled courses which start later this year, and I would urge anyone considering a rewarding career in policing to visit the Tasmanian Police website.

The Hodgman Liberal Government proudly welcomes these new Constables to the ranks and wish them all the best as they forge their own paths within the Tasmanian Police Service.

Building our digital future

The Hodgman Liberal Government is a strong supporter of our information and communication technology sector as an enabler of economic growth across all industries.

This sector provides businesses with the capacity to raise their profiles, market products state-wide, nationally and globally, and operate more efficiently. This enables Tasmanians to grow their businesses and create more jobs.

In this Budget, we are delivering on a number of key communication technology commitments made as part of our plan to Build Your Future, including:

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