The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) report on elective surgery and emergency department wait times should be a wake-up call to states to increase their share of funding to their hospitals.
Our Government provides significant funding to assist the states and territories to provide these vital services.
I call on the states and territories to provide more funding and improve the wait times.
Under the next new hospitals agreement, our Government’s funding for public hospitals in all states and territories will increase from $99.3 billion between 2015-16 and 2019-20 to $130.2 billion between 2020-21 and 2024-25.
This means more hospital services, more doctors and more nurses, and increased funding every year for every state and territory.
States and territories are responsible for providing elective and emergency department services.
A September AIHW report showed that the state and territory contribution to public hospitals grew by only 0.1 per cent in 2016-17 compared to the growth in Commonwealth funding of 6.2 per cent.
This shows the Morrison Government’s contribution to public hospitals is growing 62 times faster than the states.
It is disappointing to see Labor’s Catherine King trying to protect the states when she can’t even get the figures right in her own media release on waiting times.
The AIHW report shows that average wait time for elective surgery was 40 days and not 268 days as claimed by Labor today.