Page 4178 - Week 11 - Wednesday, 24 October 2018

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Canberra Hospital—emergency waiting times

MRS KIKKERT: My question is to the Minister for Health and Wellbeing. I refer to a statement by Simon Judkins, the President of the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine on 14 July 2018. Dr Judkins said he visited the Canberra Hospital four weeks ago and saw patients being treated in the corridors of the ED and being cared for by rostered corridor nurses. Dr Judkins said, “We were quite shocked. We haven’t seen this in a while. This sort of practice is a sign of a system under stress and a system not working.” Minister, why is the ACT health system not working when it comes to emergency department waiting times?

MS FITZHARRIS: It is, and I had a very productive meeting with Dr Judkins recently and we committed to continuing to work with the College for Emergency Medicine. I know that that is a very high priority for the new CEO of Canberra Health Services.

MRS KIKKERT: Minister, why do waiting times in the Canberra Hospital emergency department continue to get worse?

MS FITZHARRIS: I refer Mrs Kikkert to my previous answers on these matters.

MRS DUNNE: Minister, how long has the Canberra Hospital had rostered corridor nurses working in the emergency department, and do you anticipate continuing the practice?

MS FITZHARRIS: I will take the question on notice.

Government—space industry policy

MS CODY: My question is to the Minister assisting the Chief Minister on Advanced Technology and Space Industries. Minister, what significance does October hold for the space industry, and what are the implications of this for Canberra?

MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Ms Cody for her interest in advanced technology and space. I can say that space is often regarded as the final frontier, but also as so much more. It excites, thrills and inspires young and old alike. It helps drive an excitement for STEM and creates the next generation of technology that will help further our endeavours.

There has been one agency that has been at the heart of much of humankind’s quest to explore the vast unknown, exploring what some have dubbed the new ocean. Canberra has held a special relationship with this agency for much of the time that it has been around.

Sixty-one years ago this month, Sputnik became the first artificially created satellite to orbit our planet. This sparked the space age that led President Eisenhower to create the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA as it is now fondly known. NASA opened its doors 60 years ago, on 1 October. It is worth reflecting on some of

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