ANDREW Barr says there will be more doctors and nurses to treat Canberrans who need to use the expanded emergency department at the Canberra Hospital with an injection of $29 million in additional funding over the next four years.
“Health is one of the government’s biggest priorities, and I am proud that we’ll fund 39 additional staff in 2016-17, rising to a total of 54 additional staff in 2019-20,” Andrew said.
“The investment of $3.8 million in the 2016-17 financial year will fund the first four new doctors, 24 new nurses, 10 new allied health workers and one new administrative position for the ED, with a further positions filled over the subsequent three years.
“The staff will work in the newly expanded emergency department at Canberra Hospital. The expanded emergency department will deliver an extra 1000 square metres of floor space and a 30 per cent increase in treatment spaces across a number of new and refurbished areas as well as three more ambulance bays.
“The 2016/17 ACT Budget will focus on our health, education, transport and social inclusion priorities – more nurses, more teachers, more transport options and more support for our most vulnerable.”
Simon Corbell said as part of the commitment to a better health service, the government had taken a three-tiered approach by focusing on infrastructure, staffing and reforms to improve ED waiting times and hospital performance.
“These additional staff will be an essential boost to the capability of our emergency department and will go a long way toward improving the timeliness of care provided at Canberra Hospital, particularly in emergency,” Simon said.
“The funding in this year’s budget will not only deliver more staff to make best use of our new $23 million emergency department expansion, it will ensure we are delivering more timely access to emergency health care for Canberrans.
“Earlier this year we began a process of reform in Canberra Hospital Emergency Department that is improving the efficiency and access to public health services and allows our committed doctors, nurses and other hospital staff to continue to deliver high quality care in a way that allows them to meet national targets for timeliness.”
The 2016-17 ACT Budget will be handed down on June 7.