Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 8 Hansard (28 October) . . Page.. 2361 ..
MR MOORE (continuing):
However, in the current contract the VMOs are required to book their elective patients into the intensive care unit one week in advance in order to assist with planning for their patients' admission. Until 30 June 1998 the VMOs were paid $13,792.75 in cancellation fees, of which $12,798.50 was due to non-availability of intensive care unit beds.
MR MOORE: On the same day Mr Quinlan asked, with regard to the exchange of services between the National Capital Private Hospital and the Canberra Hospital, in particular intensive care: Will the Minister advise the costing for each patient transferred and the estimated annual cost to the community? Will the Minister table the costings for the arrangements made for transfers between the Canberra Hospital and the National Capital Private Hospital for intensive care?
Mr Speaker, the arrangement between the National Capital Private Hospital and the Canberra Hospital is a temporary arrangement, until we have completed the review of intensive care. The intensive care unit is the only area where there is an agreement covering the transfer of inpatients from the Canberra Hospital to the National Capital Private Hospital. The fixed cost of an intensive care unit patient treated at the National Capital Private Hospital is based on $1,850 a day for a category A patient, that is, a patient who requires nursing care on a one-to-one basis; and $1,350 a day for a category B patient, that is, a patient who requires nursing care on a one-to-two or one-to-three basis - plus pharmacy, physiotherapy and other charges.
The costings for three patients admitted to the National Capital Private Hospital on 9 September, 12 September and 4 October were $3,700, $1,861.80, and $1,999.50 respectively. It is not possible to estimate the annual cost of transfers to the National Capital Private Hospital intensive care unit in advance. Mr Speaker, when I asked last week there had been no further transfers since that time. That is part of the difficulty of trying to make an annual estimate, and the fact that this is a temporary arrangement.
The arrangement with the National Capital Private Hospital is temporary, pending an external review of the Canberra Hospital critical care beds, incorporating the intensive care unit, which is expected to be completed by December 1998 and which will advise on the number, distribution and location of critical care beds for the Canberra Hospital and the surrounding region. The arrangement is targeted to minimise cancellation of surgery, especially for category 1 patients and when additional ICU staff resources are not accessible by the hospital. Approximately 50 per cent of patients in ICU are from New South Wales and, therefore, will attract revenue from cross-border arrangements between the ACT and New South Wales.