Record $23 billion total health budget

Published 20th June, 2017

A healthy community and vital health services are front and centre of the NSW Government’s 2017-18 Budget.

Recurrent spending in health over the coming year will be $21.7 billion, a hike of $1 billion on last year, Premier Gladys Berejiklian, Treasurer Dominic Perrottet and Minister for Health and Medical Research Brad Hazzard announced today.

Almost $1.7 billion will be invested in health capital, including $149 million from the Ministry of Health’s expenses budget, taking the total health budget to more than $23 billion.

Ms Berejiklian said the recurrent funding will provide for more health staff, with capital funding to be invested in new and upgraded hospitals, ambulance stations and carparks in 2017-18.

“We believe every person across NSW deserves quality healthcare, and that’s why we have fast-tracked our commitment to making this record investment in health,” Ms Berejiklian said.

The funding ensures that the NSW Government will have increased the number of health professionals by 4,500 – exceeding its key election commitment by 1000 positions more than a year early.

Mr Perrottet said the massive investment would see sweeping upgrades of hospitals across NSW, as well as a boost for frontline services.

“We are not just investing in bricks and mortar, we’re investing in the people of NSW. So while our hospitals will receive a significant funding injection, we will also provide training for increased numbers of medical staff on the ground.”

Mr Hazzard said, “The NSW Liberals & Nationals Government has delivered the strongest economy in the country and are ensuring taxpayers’ funds go where most needed – and this Budget shows that the health of our community and our vital health services are front and centre.”

The 4,500 frontline staff includes an additional 2,250 nurses and midwives, 850 doctors, 600 allied health professionals and 800 hospital support staff.

The health highlights in the 2017-18 NSW Budget are:

  • $366 million for increased hospital activity, including:
  • 28,000 extra emergency department attendances
  • 45,900 extra admissions (including 3,200 additional elective surgeries)
  • Almost $1.7 billion in capital works funding to continue the unprecedented program of building and rebuilding hospitals and health facilities across NSW
  • $17.4 million for palliative care as part of a $100 million palliative care package over the next four years
  • $9.8 million to recruit an additional 55 specialist nurses/midwives, 10 Mental Health clinical nurse educators for new graduate and undergraduate support and

30 Clinical Support Officers

  • $2.3 million to provide an extra five rural generalist training and 15 medical specialist training positions, as well as extra medical, allied health and oral health scholarships
  • $7.5 million to employ an additional 50 relief paramedics to assist in reducing fatigue in rural and remote areas
  • $10 million to protect the health and wellbeing of NSW Ambulance staff to help paramedics avoid workplace injuries
  • $10 million to establish an Integrated Violence Abuse and Neglect Service in NSW Health
  • $4.5 million for meningococcal W vaccinations for Year 11 and 12 students, in response to increasing numbers of notifications of this strain in Australia
  • $10 million towards delivering increased oral health services, enabling around 17,000 more patients to receive a course of dental care
  • $6.7 million to tackle alcohol and drug misuse in communities
  • The Health Care Complaints Commission will receive more than $700,000 extra to improve complaints handling.

“With a record health budget of more than $23 billion, the NSW Government will fund record activity in our hospitals, bolster our clinical workforce and continue our massive hospital building program,” Mr Hazzard said.

Published 20th June, 2017