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Patients treated quicker thanks to ED, QAS teams

Wide Bay emergency patients are being treated and admitted more quickly and ambulances are getting back on the road faster, thanks to the hard work of local health and ambulance workers.

The united effort of Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service and Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) has seen improvements in a range of performance measures, indicating the vast majority of patients are being triaged and treated within clinically recommended timeframes.

One of the measures that highlights the strong performance is the Emergency Length Of Stay figure, which shows 84% of patients had an emergency stay of under four hours in May 2019, continuing a consistent trend of more than 80% each month in the 2019 calendar year.

The Queensland target for this measure is at least 80%.

Strong ELOS figures not only demonstrate that patients are being discharged home after treatment or admitted as an inpatient in a timely manner, but also indicate emergency beds being freed up – which enables quicker triage on incoming presentations and gets ambulances back out on the road.

“The collaboration between WBHHS and QAS is one of our most important partnerships and it is absolutely essential to providing our patients with the right care, in the right place, at the right time,” Wide Bay Hospital and Health Board Chair Peta Jamieson said.

“Our commitment to building partnerships is a key aspect of our Strategic Plan, Care Comes First... Thru Patients’ Eyes – which is why it’s so important to work together with the QAS to ensure patients receive the best possible emergency care.

“The results are reflective of the good work our teams and the QAS are doing, within an environment of constantly rising presentation numbers, to ensure patients can receive the best possible emergency care.”

QAS Wide Bay Local Ambulance Service Network (LASN) Manager, Chief Superintendent Russell Cooke said an effective working relationship meant patients were better off.

“At the QAS we’re seeing more demand for our services which in turn means we’re transporting more patients to hospital,” Chief Superintendent Cooke said.

“Working closely with the WBHHS to deliver a faster patient handover means we’re able to get our vehicles back into the community quickly to those who need us.

“The strong relationship we have has led to a reduction in the time our crews spend at hospitals.”

WBHHS Chief Executive Adrian Pennington said the service had opened new infrastructure to support the great work of the WBHHS and QAS teams.

“In recent months we’ve completed a number of infrastructure investments to support our emergency teams and the QAS, including the opening of the new ED at Hervey Bay, the current upgrades to Maryborough’s ED and two new medical wards in Bundaberg and Hervey Bay,” Mr Pennington said.

“The extra medical beds at Bundaberg and Hervey Bay have helped to speed up the process of admitting inpatients, reducing patients’ emergency length of stay and freeing up spaces for new presentations.

“They’re helping our Bundaberg and Hervey Bay emergency teams to continue their excellence and be among the state and nation’s leaders in emergency department performance.

“And despite operating out of a temporary department while their upgrades take place, Maryborough Hospital’s emergency department performance continues to be outstanding, with an ELOS figure of more than 90% last month.

“I’d like to thank all our emergency teams for their hard work each and every day to provide the best possible care, and for collaborating so successfully with our QAS paramedics to provide an excellent all-round emergency health service to our community.”

Last updated: 28 June 2019