Improving service levels in hospitals
Why is this important?
Timely access to care in emergency departments can lead to improved health outcomes for patients, as well as reduce or avoid hospital stays.
Every year, the number of people using emergency departments increases - more than one in five adults and one in four children present at hospital at least once a year.
Despite the growing number of people accessing emergency departments, NSW hospitals strive for top patient care within reasonable and clinically safe timeframes.
How is the government tracking?
What is the government doing?
Investing in health services
Between 2015 and 2019, the NSW Government is meeting additional demand with:
- funding for 320,000 additional people to use emergency departments
- $60 million for integrated health care via local health districts
- $32 million in community-based palliative care services, which gives patients the option to continue home-based care
- $16 million for successful preventative health programs including the Get Healthy Service, Get [email protected] and Go4Fun, to reduce the risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes.
Whole of Health Program
The Whole of Health Program is a patient-centred approach to improve access to healthcare and patient flow within NSW public hospitals. It’s designed to co-ordinate what happens in hospitals with community-based primary care, such as GPs.
The NSW Government is delivering health care in the hospital, community and at home.
- With an ageing population and a growing number of people living with chronic or complex health conditions, demands on the health system are increasing.
- Integrated care delivers routine, seamless treatment to make sure a person’s health needs, from prevention through to end-of-life, are being met with co-ordinated care from specialty health networks and local GPs.
What can you do?
- Make Healthy Normal is a step-by-step guide to a healthy lifestyle.
- Flu shots help you stay healthy through winter.
- Practising good hygiene avoids spreading illness.
Choose the right care
As our emergency departments must treat serious cases first, you can avoid a lengthy wait by using other services first.
- Healthdirect is a free health information and advice service online and over the telephone, on 1800 022 222 anytime (24 hours 7 days a week).
- The online symptom checker guides you toward the best health service for your needs. It helps you understand symptoms and possible signs of illness, causes and complications.
- Regular contact with a GP helps find health problems before they become an emergency.
Calling an ambulance
NSW Ambulance’s campaign Is your urgency an emergency? is about changing expectations. Just as every patient who presents to an emergency department is not admitted to hospital, not every patient who calls Triple Zero (000) needs a stretcher, an ambulance or a paramedic.