Health Minister palms off questions about wait times to Peel Health Campus

FOLLOWING reports this week of patients waiting days to be admitted to Peel Health Campus, the Health Minister John Day refused to answer if public elective surgeries had also been delayed at Peel Health Campus last week.

Instead, he directed questions to the Campus which did not reply to questions before the paper went to print.

However, Opposition health spokesman Roger Cook said the Liberal government tried to deny that elective surgeries at St John of God Midland Public Hospital were delayed in June.

“They suspended operations for 100 patients at Midland in June,” Mr Cook said. “Cancelling surgeries is outrageous. “It’s a clear sign that the government’s private health policy does not work.”

Mr Cook said reports of patients being forced to wait days to be admitted to the hospital is an “indictment on the government’s management of that hospital”. “It is a danger for patients when you’ve got them sitting in that situation,” he said. “They need to be seen. “The government’s solution for overcrowding in emergency departments is mismanaged and they’ve forgotten about the needs of patients.”

Mr Cook said patients are getting a “raw deal” and that the Liberal government needed to answer if they were going to expand Peel Health Campus to meet the growing needs of the region.

The Health Minister directed the Coastal Times questions regarding the expansion to the South Metropolitan Health Service.

The service said it is continuing discussions with Ramsay Health Care on “how the health care needs of those living in the Peel region are best served”.

However, in 2012, the then director of clinical services Dr Aled Williams warned that the Campus had experienced an unprecedented increase in patient demand over a five-year period.

“Particularly in its Emergency Department and with the number of overnight hospital stays” he said. “The pressure on operating theatre space and obstetric beds has continued to rise.”

He warned that if current growth continues, the hospital would be unable to cope with patient demand by 2015.