State Member for Wallsend, Ms Sonia Hornery MP, has called for an explanation from Health Minister, Brad Hazard MP, after a raft of complaints about local hospitals being forced to refer CT scans to Melbourne for assessment due to a lack of local doctors.
Ms Hornery received a number of calls in the last two weeks after patients presented at local emergency departments requiring treatment and ultimately a CT scan. Patients then faced significant delays in having the scans being assessed as no local doctors were available and their scans were eventually sent to Melbourne for a doctor there to assess.
Ms Hornery is seeking an explanation from the Health Minister as to why no local doctors, or any doctors across NSW, were on duty and available to read the results of local patients.
Quotes attributable to Member for Wallsend, Sonia Hornery
“The Health Minister needs to explain to the people of the Hunter, why patients who have presented to local emergency departments and as a result have been required to have a CT scan, are having their scans sent to Melbourne for assessment.”
“Patients were told that the staff required to read the results of the scans no longer work after 5pm on weekends.”
“This is cost cutting gone made. Patients don’t get to choose when they are sick or injured. Hospital emergency departments are a 24 hour operation and should be staffed as such.”
“It is beyond belief that files have to be sent to another State to be assessed by doctors who are obviously working 24 hours a day in Victorian Hospitals.”
“If we have CT scanners capable of performing scans running 24 hours a day, why don’t we have local doctors who are capable of assessing the results available.”
“NSW patients deserve the same treatment. Our hospitals must be adequately staffed with doctors.”