Australian doctors say the public hospital system is ‘flat lining’ and rural hospitals are feeling the strain

According to a new study many charities never see the money left to them because more families are contesting wills following death. A study by Professor Myles McGregor-Lowndes from Queensland University of Technology has revealed that charities are increasingly losing out on bequests meant for them because Australian laws are favouring the family when it

Full Post: Families contesting wills mean charities miss out on bequests

According to the Australian Medical Association (AMA) when conditions for staff and patients at regional hospitals are compared with those at city hospitals, our country cousins lose out.

A Clinicians Hospital Improvement Coalition has banded together comprised of the AMA, the Hospital Reform Group and the Doctors Reform Society and according to AMA president Brian Morton it will oversee the implementation of recommendations from the Garling Inquiry into acute care in the state’s hospitals.

Dr. Morton says the Garling Inquiry report due to be released this week will confirm that rural and regional hospitals are struggling and lack the back-up of another hospital 15 to 20 minutes away from them, which places them under greater pressure to continue to supply services to their communities.

Dr. Morton has called on NSW Health to respond effectively to Mr Garling’s recommendations and says the Hospital Improvement Coalition wants to ensure the report does remain on a shelf “gathering dust”.

AMA President, Dr. Rosanna Capolingua says the public hospital system is ‘flat lining’ and there are 1,500 unnecessary deaths in Australia due to overcrowding in public hospitals.

Dr. Capolingua says while the government has acknowledged shortfalls in public health and confirmed its intention to ‘deliver dramatic improvements in health care’, it is now ‘crunch time’ as emergency departments are overflowing and three in four patients in emergency departments who need to be admitted sometimes wait more than eight hours.

Dr. Capolingua says the slashing of hospital bed capacity by 67% in the past 20 years has impacted across the system and some conditions are simply unacceptable and the millions Australians who rely on the public hospital system are being let down by an ongoing refusal to properly support public hospitals.

She says even though public hospitals have some of the most dedicated and professional staff in the country, their dedication is taken for granted and productivity increases are rewarded with funding cuts.

According to the AMA the nation wide shortfall amounts to 3,750 public hospital beds, needing an immediate $3 billion injection - which will return the federal contribution to a 50/50 funding split with the states.

In a report by the AMA published in the British Medical Journal the under-funding of the Australian health system has been blamed for 1,500 unnecessary deaths a year.

The AMA warns that the country’s public health system is facing a major crisis because of under-investment.


According to the Australasian College of Emergency Medicine (ACEM) any move which reduces the number of major trauma centres in New South Wales hospitals is long overdue. A report released last week on acute care services has found the NSW hospital system is in crisis and in need of major reform and recommends the closure

Full Post: Experts say reducing number of trauma centres long ‘overdue’

According to a new report more Australian privately insured patients used the public hospital system last year than previously and there are concerns that encouraging people to take out private health insurance is doing little to reduce the burden on the public health system. According to the report by the Private Health Insurance Administration Council

Full Post: More private patients in public Australian hospital beds

The death of a British man waiting to be seen in a public hospital accident and emergency department has sparked an inquiry into the way he was treated. The man, 37 year old Stewart Fleming from Rainham in Kent, was forced to wait 2 hours before anyone saw him even though he had been

Full Post: Man dies after waiting hours to be treated in hospital

A national poll by the Australian medical research body, Research Australia, has found that many Australians are worried about developing a range of chronic diseases during their lifetime, particularly diseases such as arthritis. According to Research Australia more than 40% are worried about developing arthritis, more than a third worry about the risk of depression

Full Post: Worrying about your health? more government money will help you stay well

An estimated 55 million children and teens from birth to age 19 were treated in emergency departments for unintentional injuries from 2001 to 2006, according to a new report released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The report also notes that between 2000 and 2005, unintentional injuries resulted in 73,052 deaths

Full Post: CDC report details child and teen injuries / fatalities in the U.S.