The latest Department of Health and Human Services HealthStats Dashboard released today, confirms the Hodgman Government’s record investment and reforms to reduce the elective surgery waiting lists is working.

There has been a significant decrease in the number of Tasmanians waiting for their surgery with more than 6500 elective surgeries performed in the June quarter.

This is an increase of more than 2500 operations on the quarterly average, on the past six years.
Fixing Tasmania’s health system is a Government priority with our One Health System reform focused on delivering a truly statewide service, defined by higher quality services and better outcomes for all Tasmanians.

Remarkably the data shows that the waiting list of Category 2 (semi-urgent) patients has halved and there has also been a 20 per cent reduction in the number of Category 3 (non-urgent) patients waiting for surgery.

The average number of days a Category 2 patient is waiting continues to fall and Category 3’s have seen a substantial decrease.

There have also been significant improvements in oral health waiting lists, with the number of adults waiting for general care at the lowest level since 2009 and the number waiting for dentures at the lowest level since 2007.

Long term reform takes time and it is clear there is still work to be done in relation to ambulance response times which have increased slightly during a time of increasing demand.
The Government is acting to meet this demand and has made significant new investments in our ambulance service which equates to around 20 more paramedics across the state.

We also recently announced a review into the ambulance service as part of our Patients First Action Plan, to look at opportunities to increase paramedics’ ability to treat patients in the community and reduce pressure on ambulances and Emergency Departments.

The outpatient waiting list has grown over the past two years, from 26,000 when we first published it to 29,000, despite significant increases in frontline staffing across the THS.
Importantly, this is no longer the “hidden” waiting list, because the Hodgman Government made the decision to publish the list for the first time after being elected to office.

We did this in the interests of openness and transparency, unlike our secretive predecessors.
The Government is committed to reducing this list just like we have done for elective surgery, with the ongoing roll out of increased services as part of our One Health System reforms expected to result in the more timely treatment of outpatients.

The Hodgman Government is pleased to give Tasmanians a better health system than we inherited.
However, we know there is more to do and will continue to work hard to fix the state’s health system.

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