Search control section

The MyHospitals website is moving on 31 March 2020

Don’t worry – from December 11 2019 you can find the latest information about your local area on the MyHospitals webpages on the AIHW website, along with many more reports and data on a range of health and welfare topics.

In some cases, the way you find information has changed. If you need help finding anything, please contact the AIHW.

Once the website has moved, you will be able to access old archived versions of the previously published data through Trove, the National Library of Australia’s web archive. Please note the interactive content will not work in the archived version.

100 to 199 beds
This is a public hospital

Calvary Mater Newcastle Hospital

Left hand navigation section

Financial performance

Average cost of care in public hospitals

The data presented in this section can provide insights into the efficiency of Australia’s largest public hospitals by comparing the costs they incur while providing care to acute admitted patients. A hospital is considered more efficient if it is able to deliver more services while consuming fewer resources. Measuring hospital costs against a measure of hospital output for a given service can indicate how efficient hospitals are compared to other similar hospitals.

The National Weighted Activity Unit (NWAU) was developed by the Independent Hospital Pricing Authority (IHPA) as part of setting the National Efficient Price (NEP) of public hospital services. The NWAU allows different hospital activities to be expressed as a common unit of activity, by accounting for differences in the complexity of patients’ conditions or procedures and legitimate increases in costs. The notional ‘average’ hospital service is worth one NWAU.

Cost per National Weighted Activity Unit (NWAU) is a measure focusing on acute admitted patients whose treatment is eligible for Activity Based Funding. Therefore, the measure does not include any Emergency Department costs prior to a patient’s admission or costs relating to hospital services which are funded by other Commonwealth programmes, such as the Department of Veterans’ Affairs or other sources such as motor vehicle accident insurance, workers’ compensation or public liability damage claims. More about the measure, cost per NWAU.

Cost per NWAU

In 2014–15, the cost per NWAU at this hospital was $4,100, and the total NWAU was 16,429. This result compares to a peer average for cost per NWAU of $4,460. The results include private patients in public hospitals, where 30% of the patients were privately funded.

Year Cost per NWAU (adjusted for inflation)* Peer average
cost per NWAU (adjusted for inflation)*
Total NWAU* Percentage of private patients
* Data for all published years is classified by a single version of the AR–DRG codes (Version 8.0) and National Efficient Pricing Determination (2017–18, NEP17).
2014–15 $4,100 $4,460 16,429 30%
2013–14 $4,600 $4,440 15,829 30%
2012–13 $4,600 $4,460 14,739 28%

* Data for all published years is classified by a single version of the AR–DRG codes (Version 8.0) and National Efficient Pricing Determination (2017–18, NEP17).