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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 6 Hansard (5 June) . . Page.. 2008 ..


MS FITZHARRIS: Madam Speaker, I am taking responsibility for making sure that ACT Health does everything it can to achieve re-accreditation next month.

MR WALL: Minister, how will two agencies keep key documents up to date with regular reviews when you have failed to manage one directorate properly? Do you ultimately take supreme responsibility for those shortcomings?

MS FITZHARRIS: I am sorry; I did not get the back end of that question.

MR WALL: How will two agencies keep key documents up to date with regular reviews when you have failed to manage one directorate properly? And: do you ultimately take responsibility for the shortcomings of the current directorate?

MS FITZHARRIS: In terms of the two organisations, absolutely. The leaders of those two organisations will ensure that governance is properly and effectively managed within the organisation. That is very clearly the responsibility of officials within directorates. Certainly, I am taking very clear responsibility for making sure that ACT Health achieves re-accreditation, and for making significant governance and structural changes within ACT Health to remedy the situation.

Hospitals—emergency departments

MS CODY: My question is to the Minister for Health and Wellbeing. Minister, can you please outline how the government's significant emergency department investment at both Calvary and Canberra Hospital will support the wellbeing of Canberrans when they access emergency care?

MS FITZHARRIS: I thank Ms Cody very much for her question and note her ongoing interest in health care in the ACT. Of course, the health and wellbeing of our community is the government's clear priority. That is why we are investing even more in our emergency departments and emergency surgery to help people when they need it most. Recently the demand for emergency procedures has grown at six per cent each year, and presentations to Canberra Hospital's ED are increasing.

Through this budget, the ACT government is making a sustainable investment in core public hospital services, such as emergency services, by expanding the capacity of our emergency departments to respond to this growth on an ongoing basis. We will invest $47.2 million in acute care to support the emergency department, intensive care and additional inpatient beds. This will mean more acute care beds for admission and will help bring down emergency department wait times. We are also investing $10.9 million in Calvary Public Hospital to undertake significant upgrades in their emergency department on Canberra's growing north side.

By taking a territory-wide approach to health services, we are making sure our community have better access to emergency care when they need it. By expanding health care right across the territory, ensuring a sustainable funding base for essential hospital services and building new facilities, we are making sure that Canberra's public hospitals can continue to deliver high quality services to Canberrans, reduce wait times and keep our growing community healthy.


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