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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 12 Hansard (28 October) . .

Page.. 3671..


high level of care here that is not necessarily supported by a community of our size, 385,000, but we have taken that decision and it costs more. If we want to reduce those costs we have, as a community, to talk about whether it is cheaper to send and do some of that work interstate.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Minister, is there a particular area of growth in patient demand which is putting the greatest level of cost pressure on the hospital system?

MS GALLAGHER: Yes, there is a range of areas. Public outpatients is certainly growing rapidly. I think, again, that goes to the issue of cost for people who cannot afford to see specialists in their private rooms or be maintained through general practice. The elective surgery program, when there were 7,600 operations done a year, usually had 7,800 additions to the list. It is now doing 11,700 and having about 12,000 additions to the list. So there is rapid growth across a number of areas. Areas like elective surgery, which have had very significant investment in the last five years to deliver very good results, have come at a cost to the community. But my understanding, and the feedback I get from the community, is that it is a cost the community is prepared to bear as long as the level of service remains as high quality as it is and that people are getting their procedures done quickly.

Tourism—events

MS BERRY: My question is to the Minister for Tourism and Events. Minister, could you please outline all of the events that will make up Canberra's biggest ever summer of sport.

MR BARR: I thank Ms Berry for the question. It will be the biggest summer of sport that this city has seen. This includes six major cricket events at Manuka Oval, with the Carlton one-day international match between Australia and South Africa next month, on 19 November and the Prime Minister's XI match between the PM's team and England on 14 January. Canberra is hosting the Big Bash League final on 28 January 2015, and of course there are three matches in the Cricket World Cup between 18 February and 3 March. In this same period, the city is also hosting seven matches at GIO Stadium as part of the Asian Cup football.

So it is fantastic news for sports fans in this region, and particularly good news for our tourism and hospitality sector, as each of these events has the capacity to bring many thousands of people to the city in what is traditionally a quieter period for our tourism sector. It demonstrates the benefits of our centenary year investments in infrastructure and also in bringing major events to the city, demonstrating our capability to a number of major sports to be able to successfully host events of this kind.

The government takes a long-term and strategic approach to boosting our city's infrastructure, particularly its capability to host major events. The successful hosting of so many events in the centenary year is certainly flowing on and allowing us to bid successfully for events in the 2014-15 summer and beyond.


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