Topic archives: Hospitals

Australians are undergoing unnecessary surgery – here’s what we can do about it

Australians are undergoing unnecessary surgery – here’s what we can do about it

August 17, 2015 1

Peter Breadon and Stephen Duckett from the Grattan Institute write: For decades, clinicians and researchers have been concerned about patients getting treatments, including operations, that don’t work. As well as failing to treat the original health problem, ineffective care exposes patients to complications and side-effects and waste […]

Hospital patients are more likely to die at weekends but seven-day rosters are no panacea

Hospital patients are more likely to die at weekends but seven-day rosters are no panacea

August 6, 2015 1

Peter Sivey writes: If you are admitted to a hospital on the weekend, you have a higher chance of dying than if you are admitted during the week. This is known as the “weekend effect”. Evidence from the United Kingdom suggests an 11-16% increased risk of death for patients […]

Five options for health reform: what are the chances?

Five options for health reform: what are the chances?

June 23, 2015

Five options for health reform – which are not mutually exclusive – are proposed in the Reform of the Federation Discussion Paper, which has been released for public comment. Although the paper states that “the order in which the options appear does not indicate any preference”, predictably enough, it is option one that is getting […]

Private health insurance ‘carrot and stick’ reforms have failed – here’s why

April 1, 2015

Anne-marie Boxall writes: If your workplace is anything like mine, this week’s private health insurance premium increases might prompt conversations that go something like this: Can you believe our private health insurance costs $421 a month – and we are all really healthy! Some people baulk at the cost of private insurance – especially the […]

What are the health issues at stake when #NSWvotes?

What are the health issues at stake when #NSWvotes?

March 27, 2015

NSW voters are expected to return Mike Baird’s Coalition Government this weekend (see reports at The Conversation and The Guardian), but the results in the Upper House are less certain, as former MP Rob Oakeshott pointed out at Croakey earlier this week. What are the health issues and concerns at play? Croakey contributors give their […]

The real health issues facing NSW, without the spin

March 25, 2015 1

Andrew Wilson writes: What happens when you bring a state health minister face-to-face with her two main challengers, fronting a roomful of health experts, without any TV cameras or dictaphones to leap on any “gaffes” or stumbles? What you can get is a genuinely informative debate, largely free of three-second soundbites. I saw this late […]

What’s missing from Victorian election health promises? Plenty…

What’s missing from Victorian election health promises? Plenty…

November 27, 2014

For a sustainable health system, the Victorian public deserves so much more than election promises focused on more hospital beds, according to Tom Symondson, Acting Chief Executive of the Victorian Healthcare Association. His analysis of election health policies echoes some themes raised previously at this blog by Dr Christine Walker of the Chronic Illness Alliance. […]

GP co-payment would increase emergency department wait times

July 11, 2014

Mark Mackay, Campbell Thompson, Dale Ward, David Green, Don Campbell, Geoff McDonnell, Leonid Churilov, Malgorzata O’Reilly, Mark Fackrell, Nigel Bean, Peter Taylor, Robert Adams, Shaowen Qin and Keith Stockman write: The introduction of a GP co-payment could see average emergency department visits increase by between six minutes and almost three hours, our modelling shows, as more […]

The Health Wrap: A big Budget wrap; a global shared challenge; reframing Indigenous health conversations

May 18, 2014

  By Kellie Bisset   A big Budget wrap Budget night has come and gone but the impact is still reverberating. There has been much written already about the potential effects of some of the budget measures and no doubt there will be more, as protests take place across the country, and unhappy state and […]

Hospital workforce reform: better jobs and more care

April 14, 2014

Peter Breadon writes: Employees are the public hospital system’s most valuable resource, and its biggest cost. Wages account for nearly 70% of recurrent hospital spending. To keep hospital care affordable in a time of rising demand, it’s vital that skills are used to the full. Yet many professionals work well below their skill level. Does it take 15 […]

Want Medicare savings? Stop paying for private hospitals

March 19, 2014 2

Peter Sivey writes: The polls this week suggest half of Australians think the Abbott government should reduce the cost of Medicare. My solution? Claw back some of the A$9 billion the government pays to private hospitals. Consider my experience … A few years ago I twisted my knee playing football. My GP, maybe after estimating my salary, suggested […]

An alternative perspective on the evidence for a billion dollar opportunity

March 5, 2014 1

A new report by the Grattan Institute is making headlines with the conclusion that the government could save up to a billion dollars in health care costs with a series of reforms.  An overview of Controlling the cost of care: a billion dollar hospital opportunity  on the Grattan Institute website suggests that State governments should: “pay hospitals […]

Being poor in NSW means a longer wait to get into hospital

November 19, 2013

Glenn Jones writes: Australia’s public health system is ostensibly based on the notion of equity of access. But research recently published by my colleagues and I shows this is not the case in New South Wales public hospitals. The National Healthcare Agreement between Australian states and the Federal government affirms the nation’s health system should: provide all Australians with […]

Why it’s time to get out of our comfort zone when deciding how to spend health dollars…

Why it’s time to get out of our comfort zone when deciding how to spend health dollars…

September 2, 2013

If you were a benevolent dictator with $12 billion to splurge on fixing the healthcare system (the equivalent of Queensland’s health budget), what would be the fairest and best way of spending the funds? This was the challenge given to speakers at an Australian Centre for Health Services Innovation (AusHSI) Thought Leaders Forum in Brisbane […]

Public-private hospital partnerships are risky business

August 1, 2013

Stephen Duckett writes: Public-private partnerships for new hospital developments are again in vogue in Australia, with recent announcements that Sydney’s new northern beaches hospital and the new Sunshine Coast University Hospital will be developed under those arrangements. Such partnerships can have a variety of forms. One model is for a private company to take responsibility for both building a […]

The Health Wrap: the tobacco stain, wicked obesity problems, a new Aboriginal health vision and more

July 26, 2013

This week’s Health Wrap has been prepared by Melissa Davey, former SMH journalist, prolific tweeter and keen public health observer who has joined me at the Sax Institute in the new role of Communications Manager. This expansion of the Croakey Health Wrap team is well timed given the amount of health news being produced and […]

Will the buck stop with Rudd on fixing the hospital system?

June 27, 2013

Robert Wells writes: One of the key platforms of the first Rudd government was to reform the health and hospital system. The key message from then-prime minister Kevin Rudd was that the health, and particularly hospitals, system would be “fixed” within two years of the 2007 election. If the health system didn’t improve – and […]

The Health Wrap: Tobacco control, Closing the Gap, patient safety, pharma sagas and more

The Health Wrap: Tobacco control, Closing the Gap, patient safety, pharma sagas and more

June 14, 2013

By Kellie Bisset Tobacco control was a dominant issue this fortnight, but Closing the Gap on Indigenous health inequality, barriers to evidence-informed policy, patient safety and immunisation were also on the agenda. Here are some highlights. Towards a smoke-free zone World No Tobacco Day on 31 May saw accusations levelled at the Queensland Government for […]

“Blueprint for Better Healthcare”, The Queensland Health Minister’s Locomotive

February 28, 2013 1

Yesterday the LNP in Queensland announced its “Blueprint for Better Healthcare”. Michael Moore, CEO Public Health Association of Australia and Adjunct Professor Health Policy and Governance University of Canberra, reports on the launch and the challenges ahead. Michael Moore writes: The Premier of Queensland and his Minister for Health were quite upbeat about the launch of the “Blueprint for […]

Medi-muddle: hospital funding fight is resolved but the blame game goes on

February 26, 2013

Stephen Duckett writes:  After months of battle between the Commonwealth and Victorian governments on hospital funding, Federal Health Minister Tanya Plibersek dramatically intervened last Wednesday by announcing a A$107 million “rescue package” which would go directly to Victorian public hospitals. Why did she do so, and what does it mean for health politics? First, some […]