Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 16 August 2017) . . Page.. 2786 ..
MRS JONES: Minister, what steps have you taken to make sure that all other issues are also being investigated? When will we know the outcomes?
MS STEPHEN-SMITH: I am regularly provided with information from the directorate about incidents that have been raised: the ones they have previously looked into, the details of those and what has been referred. I am in constant conversation with the directorate about the range of incidents that were raised in a number of anonymous emails earlier this year.
I am assured that those incidents are either known and have been investigated—are being currently investigated—or, as I have previously said in this place, some specific incidents have not been able to be investigated in detail because insufficient information was provided to enable an investigation in detail. In relation to those, the Community Services Directorate has sought from the anonymous correspondent additional detail so that those allegations can be investigated.
Canberra Hospital—patient flow management
MS LEE: My question is to the Minister for Health. Minister, what have you done to satisfy yourself that the Canberra Hospital is coping with demand and that code yellows are rarely required?
MS FITZHARRIS: I thank Ms Lee for the question. I refer to some of the answers that I gave yesterday, and I can provide a further update of a question that I took on notice. I can advise the Assembly that in the current winter period, when we are seeing increased demand, Canberra Hospital has extensive plans in place to cope with this busy winter season. These include 34 additional inpatient beds provided under the winter bed management plan and two additional ICU beds from the beginning of August. Nine more ED beds opened as the final stage of the ED expansion in July.
Additional nurses have been recruited in paediatrics, as well as permanent and casual positions in the nursing and midwifery relief pool. All staff across ACT Health have received the flu vaccination, which has seen nearly 3,600 staff vaccinated as of 14 August. Ward services have adjusted wardsperson rosters to meet afternoon and evening demand through ED and medical imaging, adding more hospital assistants to clean beds as they turn over and maintain medical stock levels. And there is increased afternoon and evening availability of the central equipment courier for transporting items of medication to and from pharmacy and pathology.
Daily operational disciplines are used to ensure that the hospital is operating effectively. Canberra Hospital will discharge between 600 and 650 patients each week during this time of year, and there is a close operational focus on managing patient movement throughout the hospital. The discharge lounge additionally will be open from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday and Sunday, commencing this weekend, to assist with weekend patient flow.