Mike Rann has announced an extra $109 million for our state’s Emergency Departments in an effort to bring patient waiting times down to 4 hours or under. Currently with some of the lowest waiting times in the country, Mr Rann believes that waiting times for patients can be reduced even further.
On average, patients are spending just shy of 6 hours in Emergency Departments while they are being treated or waiting for treatment.
The extra funds will employ around 100 extra staff, including doctors, nurses and other staff in public hospitals around the State.
Sounding awfully like part of the Rudd Government’s national health reforms, Mr Rann insists it is only at South Australia’s recommendation that this policy is to be adopted nationally.
“The benchmark of a four hour maximum wait is a simple tool that patients and staff can all use to keep South Australia’s hospital system – and Government – accountable.”
Part of the funds will also be used to assist disability patients find accommodation once they have completed their stay in hospital, as well as $2.5 million being used to improve services to mental health patients.
In this humble person’s opinion, all money spent on public health is good money, however $2.5 million on mental health services seems rather lacking considering the turmoil the sector appears to be in at the moment. Not to look a gift-horse in the mouth though, all round it’s prospectively good news for ED patients in South Australia.