Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2532 ..
MR STANHOPE (continuing):
forward estimates. We provided $2.6 million for nursing initiatives, which allowed us to employ an additional 49.9 full-time equivalent nurses at the Canberra Hospital. As a result of that we were able to settle the long-running nurses dispute at the Canberra Hospital, which so disrupted the delivery of services at the Canberra Hospital.
We provided $820,000 for an additional 300 cost-weighted separations, $200,000 for dermatology, $300,000 for a trainee neurologist, $200,000 for a new nursing information system, $300,000 for a medical officer rostering system and $3.03 million for equipment for oncology, a multi-leaf collimator, to allow us to better treat people with cancer at the Canberra Hospital. Through that expenditure, we now have the most up-to-date, state-of-the-art equipment at the Canberra Hospital for dealing with people with cancer.
In addition to that-as I have explained ad nauseam, but there is something of a fetish within the Liberal Party about this-we provided, in total, $4.7 million to Calvary Hospital, which purchased an additional 900-
Mr Smyth: The lists have gone up.
Mr Corbell: This is in this period since the election.
Mr Smyth: Outpatients have gone down.
MR STANHOPE: Well, you need to put these figures in context. We provided an additional $4.7 million-
Mr Humphries: So why are the waiting lists going up?
MR STANHOPE: Let me answer. We provided an additional $4.7 million to Calvary Hospital, which provided an additional 938 cost-weighted separations. That, added to the 300 in-patient cost-weighted separations at the Canberra Hospital, equates to 1,238 additional cost-weighted separations. In other words, we treated an additional 1,350 patients. Since we came to office in October last year, through additional funding to the Canberra Hospital and the Calvary Hospital, we permitted those hospitals to treat 1,350 more people than would have been treated if you had remained in office. And that is still going up. There are in Canberra 1,350 people who have received treatment for elective surgery at the Canberra and Calvary hospitals who would not have been treated if you had been re-elected.
MR HUMPHRIES: I have a supplementary question. The minister said that one of those two figures I quoted was the August figure. Minister, which is the August figure? Is it the figure that you quoted yesterday in these terms: "There were 4,054 people on that elective surgery waiting list at the end of July 2002"? Or is the August figure the figure that you referred to in the press release of yesterday, which is described as a July 2002 figure, that is, 3,921? Did you tell us the truth in here, or did you tell the truth to the people in the press release you put out yesterday?
MR STANHOPE: Thank you, Mr Humphries. There is perhaps confusion between the July and August figures in the statements I have made. I will seek to determine which is which.
Mrs Dunne: You still do not know?