News National Public hospitals struggle, and it’s going to get worse: AMA

Public hospitals struggle, and it’s going to get worse: AMA

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Public hospitals are failing to meet targets on patient care and the Abbott government’s cuts will compound the problem, the Australian Medical Association (AMA) says.

The AMA will today release its 2014 report card on the performance of the nation’s public hospitals.

It will show the system is under enormous strain and is failing to meet targets set for the most urgent cases.

Just 68 per cent of emergency patients classified as urgent cases were seen within half an hour, when the target was 80 per cent, the report says.

AMA president Steve Hambleton said it would take the system another six years to reach that benchmark based on current indicators.

He said cuts to hospital funding were a major concern.

He said the former Labor government cut $134 million from public hospitals in 2012/13.

“The current government is planning to spend about $400 million less on public hospitals over the next three years. That’s a real concern because we are not making targets,” Dr Hambleton told the ABC.

The full report will be released in Brisbane at 10am (AEST).

It will include a state-by-state performance breakdown and for the first time.

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