News, media releases

Hundreds more Tasmanians join the growing queue for surgery

·       Another 470-plus Tasmanians join the elective surgery waiting list

·        Number of Tasmanians waiting to see a dentist grows by almost 900

·        Health crisis not getting any better under Minister Courtney – only getting worse

More Tasmanians are waiting untenable periods for elective surgery and to see a dentist as the state’s health crisis continues to worsen under the Gutwein Liberal Government and Health Minister Sarah Courtney.

Shadow Health Minister Sarah Lovell said the release of updated health statistics today showed further blow-outs in already unacceptable waiting times in the state’s health system, with almost 11,800 Tasmanians on a growing wait list – an increase of 477 between June and September last year.

“Under this Minister and the Liberal Government, everything is getting worse,” Ms Lovell said.

“There is not a single in indication of any improvement on Ms Courtney’s watch and there is simply no urgency to address the critical need of thousands of Tasmanians who cannot even get in to see a medical profession, let alone receive their treatment.

“It defies belief that this Minister would think it’s OK that more than 16,200 Tasmanians are waiting to see a dentist, an increase of almost 900 in only a three month period last year.

“It’s not acceptable that Ms Courtney thinks it’s ok the surgery waiting list has grown by 477 Tasmanians or that 50 per cent of patients are not being seen within recommended times.

“It’s unacceptable that the outpatient waiting list has grown by more than 5,400 – or 13 per cent – with an average waiting time of 214 days for Category One patients.

“None of this is acceptable and it’s abundantly clear the health system is going from bad to worse because the government has just not provided the resources that are needed to cope with demand.

“Tasmanians can have no confidence the situation will change or improve because with Ms Courtney in charge, things are not getting better, only worse.”

Sarah Lovell MLC
Shadow Health Minister