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Emergency Department
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NSW Emergency Department Presentations Reach Worrying Record-High

Presentations at New South Wales emergency departments and ambulance activity have reached record highs, indicating the healthcare system remains under unprecedented pressure.

According to the Bureau of Health Information report, 810,201 emergency department presentations were recorded in the January to March quarter of 2024 – up 5.2 per cent from the same quarter last year.

Of the presentations, 6,677 were triage one (resusitation), 123,935 were triage two (emergency) and 297,456 were triage three (urgent). It is the highest number of presentations on record

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Meanwhile, there were 383,341 ambulance responses – the highest of any quarter since reporting by BHI began un 2010.

More than 17,000 were priority 1A or life-threatening cases – another record high since.

The report noted despite the number of calls made to ambulance, the mediam response time for life-threatening cases was eight minutes, sitting within the 10-minute benchmarck.

To assist with relieving the stress on emergency departments, 16 Urgent Care Centres have been established in NSW since July 2020.

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In a statement, the NSW Government said it was committed to “alleviating pressure on the state’s busy hospitals”.

Measures implemented include boosting staff and treatment spaces, creating more pathways to provide care outside hospitals, and allowing pharmacies to prescribe low complex medications.

Mr Park said NSW hospitals were being “confronted with unprecendented pressure”.

“We are undertaking the structural reforms to our health system to ensure our community receives the care they need and deserve – by delivering the single largest boost to our workforce in the history of our health system, and creating more pathways to treatment and care outside the hospital,” he said

“I want to extend my sincere gratitude to our dedicated frontline staff who continued to perform exceptionally well throughout this extremely busy period.”

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