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National figures on elective surgery and ED care

Posted 23 October 2014

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare has released Australia's 2013-14 hospital statistics for elective surgery waiting times and for emergency department care.

Elective surgery waiting times:

  • Admissions for elective surgery in Victorian public hospitals have increased by 11% compared to the previous year. However, some of this increase may be a result of reduced activity in 2012-13 due to Commonwealth funding cuts.
  • Compared to other states and territories, a relatively low proportion of category 2 patients were seen within clinically recommended times in Victoria public hospitals, with the median waiting time for these patients being 59 days.  Victorian public hospitals continue to admit 100% of Category 1 patients within 30 days, while 90.1% of Category 3 patients were admitted within 365 days.
  • Victorian public hospitals reported the highest proportion of admissions for elective surgery with an adverse event at 8.5%.  The reported figure Australia-wide between April 2013 and March 2014 was 6.5%. The proportion of unplanned readmissions following admission from the elective surgery list for this period was 1.1% in Victoria and 1.2% nationally.

Access 2013-14 hospital statistics on elective surgery waiting times

Emergency department care:

  • The increase in emergency department admissions in Victoria from 2012-13 to 2013-14 was 2.9% while the adjusted national increase for this period was 2.4%. Since 2009-10, the number of emergency department admissions in Victorian public hospitals has increased by 2.4%
  • Three-quarters of patients in Victorian public hospital emergency departments were seen on time. This is the same as the national figure, and shows an improvement on the proportion of patients seen on time in previous years.
  • In Victoria, 69% of people waiting for emergency department care received care within four hours, and 46% of people admitted to hospital from emergency departments were admitted within four hours.  Nationally, 73% of people waiting for emergency department care received care within four hours, and 45% of people admitted to hospital from emergency departments were admitted within four hours.
  • A 2012-13 ABS survey on patient experience in emergency departments found: “The main reason a respondent presented at emergency departments instead of a general practitioner on the most recent occasion was because they considered their condition was serious or life threatening (49.9%), the time of day or day of the week they needed care (25.5%), they were sent there by their general practitioner (6.7%) and the waiting times for a general practitioner were too long (2.5%)."

 Access 2013-14 hospital statistics on emergency department care

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