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Toowoomba Hospital says public expectations raised

Dr Wayne Hsueh outside the Emergency entrance at Toowoomba Hospital, where admissions efficiency has improved.
Dr Wayne Hsueh outside the Emergency entrance at Toowoomba Hospital, where admissions efficiency has improved. Gen Kennedy

REPORTING hospital data has created higher public expectations of services - and that's no bad thing, says a Toowoomba doctor said.

Dr Wayne Hsueh, deputy director of medical services at Toowoomba Hospital, said the national emergency access target data, among other measures, made the hospital more accountable to the community.

This week, Health Minister Lawrence Springborg noted that the hospital was now meeting its NEAT, which measures the percentage of patients either admitted or transferred within four hours of presenting to emergency.

Dr Hsueh had been achieving well above its target of 70%, achieving 86% and 84% on Tuesday and Wednesday this week.

Overall, he said, the performance would be around 75%, up around 2% from January.

"If you're waiting for hours, you don't know what's happening, that's really not good," Dr Hsueh said.

"It's bad for mortality and bad for staff morale."

Mr Springborg announced earlier this week that data reporting hospitals would increase from 33 to 57.

Dr Hsueh said the comparison between peer hospitals could be useful.

"I think it will raise public expectation, and that's not necessarily a bad thing, because we are providing services to our patients, our community, and we need to know what they think of our services," he said.

"We compare within our peer group. You compare like with like.

"There are numbers that we're proud of, and numbers we need to improve."

Topics:  lawrence springborg, qld health, toowoomba base hospital, toowoomba hospital



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