Generic Hospital
Generic Hospital

Target our hospitals have given up hitting

QUEENSLAND hospitals are failing to meet their own benchmarks to see emergency patients in time, and have abolished elective-surgery targets they can't reach.

The Courier-Mail can reveal that not one hospital and health service saw all of its sickest patients within recommended times, with hospitals south of Brisbane and on the Gold Coast performing the worst.

While most came close to seeing the most critical patients within two minutes, many wait times blew past the 10-minute and 30-minute markers for those with conditions imminently or potentially life-threatening.

Only three of the state's 15 hospital and health services met the previous 25-day target for elective surgery waits used in 2017-18.

The target is now missing from the 2018-19 annual reports released last night.

The results come amid pressure on Health Minister Steven Miles to fix blown-out wait times, ambulance ramping and IT bungles relating to the integrated electronic medical record system (ieMR) and ordering system.

The worst elective surgery results were in regional areas, with Central Queensland and Central West recording the longest wait of 59 days.

Patients in the South West district covering Roma and Charleville waited 55 days, Gold Coast residents waited 49 days and Mackay residents waited 43.

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Those in the Torres Strait waited just a week for elective surgery and an average of five minutes in emergency departments.

Over half of the services recorded deficits.

West Moreton recorded a $26.88 million deficit because of projects such as ieMR.

The Sunshine Coast also recorded a staggering $22.2 million deficit, up from the $13.9 million deficit in 2017-18, and attributed the result to increased demand.

The troubled Metro South Hospital and Health Service recorded a $15 million deficit, and blamed increased demand on population ageing and the prevalence of chronic disease conditions.

The Children's Health Queensland Hospital and Health Service, which runs the Queensland Children's Hospital, finished the financial year with an operating surplus of $27.79 million.

It found the implementation of the ieMR "has continued to result in increased efficiencies and service improvements".

The hospital was one of the state's best-performing hospitals.

It exceeded its target of treating the second-most-serious category on time.

Additional reporting Domanii Cameron & Sarah Matthews