NSW Announce $400 Million Boost To Ease Elective Surgery Backlog
Bringing it forward
The NSW government has announced more than $400 million to expedite thousands of elective surgeries suspended during Covid.
Health Minister Brad Hazzard said $408 million has been allocated in Tuesday’s budget to clear the backlog of elective surgeries, which had been delayed during the height of the pandemic.
“What this does for the health system is add an enormous amount of additional funds to help us try and address some of those delays,” he said on Monday.
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The funding boost will go towards engaging 267 full-time equivalent staff and approving weekend and evening hours for operating theatres at some hospitals.
Treasurer Matt Kean said it “is about ensuring that people can get access to elective surgery when they need it".
“Our health system has served us so well during the pandemic,” he said.
But “Covid slashed our health system these past few years and elective surgeries have been in the firing line. We’re getting elective surgery back on".
With people overdue for hip replacements, gall bladder and heart valve replacements and more, Health secretary Susan Pearce said the waiting list for elective surgery has blown out to around 18,000.
“We will be doing absolutely everything we can to recruit more staff into the NSW health system. That is clearly what we’re aiming to do. It’s what every state in the country is doing at the moment and indeed, across the world,”
- Ms Pearce
Meanwhile, Premier Dominic Perrottet said the additional funding will bring the state government’s commitment to reducing elective surgery waiting periods to almost $1 billion.
“This additional $408 million will make a real difference to patients by bringing their surgeries forward,” Perrottet said.
“We will increase elective surgery activity in our public hospitals and continue our collaborative care arrangements with private hospitals, meaning public patients will get faster access to the care they need.
- Premier Perrottet
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