Page 3987 - Week 13 - Wednesday, 30 October 2013
office. My understanding, and I followed this in the media, is that the information that was not provided related to information that would contain personal health information.
Some of them, for example, may be about a fall in the hospital. Clearly, the incident would relate to an individual who has fallen and it would go into some detail about the situation. In that instance, my understanding is that the information was not disclosed because of that.
Again, I think we do provide a lot of information. It is up there on the FOI website. The fact that it has been talked about would show that there is a level of understanding of information out there. As I have said a number of times, the government’s view is that where possible, information should be shared with the community because on one level it enables a better understanding of the stresses and strains that are placed on our operational staff in the delivery of their service.
MADAM SPEAKER: Before I call the next question, I acknowledge the presence in the gallery of members of the University of the Third Age who are here with the Parliamentary Education Office. I welcome you to your Assembly.
Questions without notice
DR BOURKE: My question is to the Minister for Health. Can the minister update the Assembly on the recently opened expansion to the Canberra Hospital emergency department and intensive care unit?
MS GALLAGHER: I thank Dr Bourke for his third question to me as Minister for Health this week. Last month I opened a new three-storey extension to the emergency department and the intensive care unit at Canberra Hospital. It was an important boost for the hospital, following on from the extension that was completed at Calvary’s emergency department last December.
The expanded clinical space at Canberra Hospital has increased the capacity of the ED by eight treatment spaces. Staff from the emergency management unit have moved into the new treatment spaces and the extra beds are now operational. The new beds in the space in the ED have also enabled the introduction of a new model to stream patients within the department. This model will help move patients more quickly into the treatment area and allow staff to streamline higher and lower acuity patients as circumstances dictate.
In the last emergency department report that I have been provided with, it is showing improvements in timeliness for people being treated in the emergency department, and I hope those figures will be sustained. Models like this have shown to improve the flow of patients through the emergency department. There have been improvements since 10 October when it was introduced. We look forward to seeing those trends continue. I think all members in this place would support that.