Pa­tients left wait­ing

Wanneroo Weekender - - Front Page - Sarah Brookes

AM­BU­LANCE ramp­ing at Joon­dalup Health Cam­pus has con­tin­ued to es­ca­late with pa­tients wait­ing to ac­cess emer­gency de­part­ments for more than 130 hours this week, ac­cord­ing to St John Am­bu­lance fig­ures.

On Mon­day, am­bu­lances were ramped at the hospi­tal for al­most 40 hours and for more than 25 hours the pre­vi­ous day.

Op­po­si­tion health spokesman Sean L’Es­trange said hos­pi­tals across Perth were un­der stress.

“Last week we had Health Min­is­ter Roger Cook de­fend­ing 168.7 hours of am­bu­lance ramp­ing last Tues­day, the third worst in seven years,” he said.

“This week we’re see­ing an even worse sit­u­a­tion, with 180.6 hours of ramp­ing at Perth hos­pi­tals on Mon­day.

“Pa­tients who ar­rive at our state’s hospi­tal emer­gency de­part­ments by am­bu­lance are pa­tients in need of pri­or­ity care and clearly our hos­pi­tals are not be­ing re­sourced suf­fi­ciently to pro­vide that care.

“By any­one’s def­i­ni­tion, hos­pi­tals that are un­able to take pa­tients ar­riv­ing by am­bu­lance are hos­pi­tals un­der stress.”

The Health Min­is­ter was con­tacted for com­ment.

Mr L’Es­trange said Mr Cook could not con­tinue blam­ing the flu sea­son for the prob­lem.

“The flu sea­son hap­pens every year,” he said.

“In July, this Gov­ern­ment took a warn­ing shot across its bow when data re­vealed that none of our ma­jor pub­lic hos­pi­tals were achiev­ing the na­tion­ally agreed target of clear­ing 90 per cent of pa­tients through an emer­gency de­part­ment in un­der four hours.

“The State Gov­ern­ment has made no pro­vi­sion to ad­dress th­ese is­sues.”

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