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Waiting times for elective surgery and time spent in emergency departments

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Media backgrounder
RELEASED: 25 July 2013

State and territory summaries from January to March 2013

This document is intended as a quick reference guide showing peer group and state summaries of hospital results for the percentage of all patients departing the emergency department (ED) within four hours of arrival. Results are for the period January to March 2013 and are compared to January to March 2012. Data includes 122 hospitals (referred to as ‘larger hospitals’ in this document) that are large enough to be allocated to one of five peer groups: major metropolitan, major regional, large metropolitan, large regional and medium hospitals – which together account for about 90% of emergency department presentations nationally.

This page contains:

  1. The number of hospitals that improved or decreased their performance compared to January to March 2012 – all states and territories
  2. The number of hospitals that were meeting the 2013 state/territory targets during the period – all states and territories
  3. The hospitals that improved the most in each state/territory
  4. The hospitals where performance declined the most in each state/territory
  5. The individual hospitals that met the 2013 state/territory targets during the period in each state/territory

Figure 1: Total measurement of waiting times in emergency departments

Figure showing the total measurement of waiting times for a patient in emergency departments, all of which is measured in this data.

A patient’s waiting time in emergency departments is comprised of four events. ‘Triage’ is the first, ‘Waiting time for treatment’ is the second, and both of these make up the category ‘Time to treatment’. Third is the time ‘Seen by doctor’, and fourth is ‘Evaluation and care’ after which the patient leaves the emergency department. All of these are measured by this data which sums up ‘Time patients spend in emergency departments’.

Figure 2: Number of larger hospitals that reached the 2013 state target during the period, Jan–Mar 2013, by state

 
State Larger hospitals that reached their state 2013 target Number of larger hospitals
NSW 9 44
VIC 6 28
QLD 11 24
WA 3 12
SA 1 6
TAS 1 4
ACT 0 2
NT 0 2

State and territory summaries

All peer groups – performance most improved and declined

Figure 3: Number of larger hospitals that improved by 5 or more percentage points, by state, Jan–Mar 2012 compared to Jan–Mar 2013

 
State Larger hospitals that improved by 5 or more percentage points* Number of larger hospitals
NSW 23 44
VIC 7 28
QLD 15 24
WA 0 12
SA 1 6
TAS 0 4
ACT 0 2
NT 0 2

* Number of larger hospitals that improved by 5 or more percentage points, by state, Jan–Mar 2012 compared to Jan–Mar 2013

Figure 4: Number of larger hospitals that declined by 5 or more percentage points, by state, Jan–Mar 2012 compared to Jan–Mar 2013

 
State Larger hospitals that declined by 5 or more percentage points* Number of larger hospitals
NSW 0 44
VIC 3 28
QLD 0 24
WA 6 12
SA 1 6
TAS 0 4
ACT 0 2
NT 0 2

* Number of larger hospitals that declined by 5 or more percentage points, by state, Jan–Mar 2012 compared to Jan–Mar 2013

New South Wales (peer grouped hospitals: 44 out of 122 hospitals)

The percentage of patients leaving ED within four hours (Jan to Mar 2012 compared to Jan to Mar 2013)

  • Around half (23 of 44) of New South Wales hospitals improved by 5 or more percentage points
  • Nine hospitals improved by 10 or more percentage points – the hospitals with the largest improvements are:
    • Manning Hospital by 22 percentage points (56% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 78% in Jan to Mar 2013)
    • Fairfield Hospital by 16 percentage points (59% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 75% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • Three hospitals’ performance declined but only between 1 and 4 percentage points
  • No New South Wales hospitals were meeting the 2015 national target of 90% in the March 2013 quarter
  • Nine hospitals were meeting the 2013 New South Wales target of 71% in the March 2013 quarter (Table 1).

Table 1: New South Wales hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
Manning Hospital Major regional hospitals 6,511 78
Fairfield Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 8,341 75
Auburn Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 6,513 76
The Tweed Hospital Major metropolitan hospitals 10,935 72
Ryde Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 6,542 74
Manly Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 6,310 84
Belmont Hospital Medium hospitals 6,127 73
Broken Hill Hospital Medium hospitals 5,377 84
Kempsey Hospital Medium hospitals 5,141 81

Victoria (peer grouped hospitals: 28 out of 122 hospitals)

The percentage of patients leaving ED within four hours (Jan to Mar 2012 compared to Jan to Mar 2013)

  • One quarter (7 of 28) of hospitals improved by 5 or more percentage points
  • One hospital improved by more than 10 percentage points:
    • Western Hospital by 11 percentage points (42% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 53% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • Three hospitals’ performance has declined by 5 or more percentage points:
    • Northeast Health Wangaratta by 9 percentage points (76% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 67% in Jan to Mar 2013)
    • Albury Wodonga (Wodonga Campus) by 5 percentage points (83% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 78% in Jan to Mar 2013)
    • Casey Hospital by 5 percentage points (75% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 70% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • No Victorian hospitals were meeting the 2015 national target of 90% in the March 2013 quarter
  • Six hospitals were meeting the 2013 Victorian target of 75% in the March 2013 quarter (Table 2).

Table 2: Victorian hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
The Alfred Major metropolitan hospitals 15,105 75
The Bendigo Hospital Major regional hospitals 11,456 78
Sandringham Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 8,307 79
Mildura Base Hospital Large regional hospitals 7,125 76
Rosebud Hospital Medium hospitals 5,932 86
Albury Wodonga Health [Wodonga Campus] Large regional hospitals 6,888 78

Queensland (peer grouped hospitals: 24 out of 122 hospitals)

The percentage of patients leaving ED within four hours (Jan to Mar 2012 compared to Jan to Mar 2013)

  • About two thirds (15 of 24) of hospitals improved by 5 or more percentage points
  • 13 hospitals improved by 10 or more percentage points with Princess Alexandra improving by the most for all peer grouped hospitals nationally. The Queensland hospitals with the largest improvements were:
    • Princess Alexandra by 29 percentage points (33% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 62% in Jan to Mar 2013)
    • Mater Adult Hospital by 17 percentage points (63% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 80% in Jan to Mar 2013)
    • Cairns Base Hospital by 16 percentage points (55% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 71% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • Four hospitals’ performance declined but only between 1 and 4 percentage points
  • Three hospitals met the national 2015 target of 90% in the March 2013 quarter:
    • Gympie - 91%
    • Gladstone - 90%
    • Mount Isa - 90%
  • 11 of 24 hospitals were meeting the Queensland state target of 77% in the March 2013 quarter (Table 3).

Table 3: Queensland hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
Mater Adult Hospital Major metropolitan hospitals 9,516 80
Queen Elizabeth II Jubilee Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 9,092 80
Toowoomba Hospital Major regional hospitals 11,252 77
Caloundra Hospital Medium hospitals 6,823 85
Gladstone Hospital Medium hospitals 7,254 90
Redland Hospital Large metropolitan hospitals 13,258 77
Mount Isa Hospital Large regional hospitals 7,972 90
Gympie Hospital Medium hospitals 7,681 91
Maryborough Hospital Medium hospitals 5,405 84
Mackay Base Hospital Major regional hospitals 11,312 77
Bundaberg Hospital Major regional hospitals 11,638 81

Western Australia (peer grouped hospitals: 12 out of 122 hospitals)

The percentage of patients leaving ED within four hours (Jan to Mar 2012 compared to Jan to Mar 2013)

  • No hospitals improved by 5 or more percentage points
  • Half (6 of 12) of the state’s hospitals reported a decline in performance by 5 or more percentage points
  • No Western Australian hospitals were meeting the 2015 national target of 90% in the March 2013 quarter
  • Three hospitals were meeting the 2013 Western Australian target of 81% for 2013 in the March 2013 quarter (Table 4).

Table 4: Western Australian hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
Kalgoorlie Hospital Large regional hospitals 8,378 88
Geraldton Hospital Large regional hospitals 6,951 84
Albany Hospital Large regional hospitals 6,237 88

South Australia (peer grouped hospitals: 6 out of 122 hospitals)

The percentage of patients leaving ED within four hours (Jan to Mar 2012 compared to Jan to Mar 2013)

  • Royal Adelaide improved by 7 percentage points (50% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 57% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • Modbury Hospital’s performance declined by 7 percentage points (72% in Jan to Mar 2012 compared to 65% in Jan to Mar 2013)
  • One hospital was meeting the South Australian state target of 75% in the March 2013 quarter (Table 5).

Table 5: South Australian hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
Noarlunga Public Hospital Medium hospitals 11,062 75

Tasmania (peer grouped hospitals: 4 out of 122 hospitals)

  • One hospital was meeting the Tasmanian state target of 78% in the March 2013 quarter (Table 6).

Table 6: Tasmanian hospitals that were meeting the state 2013 National Emergency Access Target, Jan–Mar 2013

Hospital Peer group ED Presentations % departing ED within 4 hrs Jan–Mar 2013
North West Regional Hospital Large regional hospitals 6,005 79

Australian Capital Territory (peer grouped hospitals: 2 out of 122 hospitals)

  • Neither hospital was meeting the state target of 65% for 2013 in the March 2013 quarter.

Northern Territory (peer grouped hospitals: 2 out of 122 hospitals)

  • Neither hospital was meeting the state target of 75% for 2013 in the March 2013 quarter.