STATEMENT FROM AMA TASMANIA PRESIDENT
Tuesday 11 February 2020
AMA Tasmania welcomes the government’s announcement of $600 million to be invested in health over four years and a halt on any further cuts to the department through efficiency dividends over the forward estimates.
“We welcome the government’s focus on health and hope this investment will address many of the issues raised by the AMA.
“Our health system is badly in need of increased investment in staff, equipment and capital infrastructure.
“What we want to ensure is that today’s announcement is not just about plugging existing holes in the health budget, but will see, in real terms, increased investment in our hospitals.
“The Tasmanian health system has seen some of its worst times over the past twelve months with growing patient demand putting pressure on ambulances, emergency departments, in-patient beds and elective surgery.
“Staff have been stretched across our hospitals trying to deliver quality care under enormous pressure affecting morale and resulting in more than expected junior doctors leaving our state.
“We hope that this funding injection will provide much-needed relief for hospital budgets that should enable more hospital beds to be opened, doctors employed, and equipment purchased.
“It should also help to build morale in what has been a crisis-driven system for too long.
“Similarly, we understand that information and communications technology (ICT) will be a focus in the upcoming budget with additional resources needed to drive change.
“AMA Tasmania strongly supports investment in ICT across health to ensure systems are modernised to enable everything from sharing appropriate patient information with General Practice in a timely manner to ensure back office pay processes are modern and efficient and doctors and other staff are appropriately paid.
“Today’s announcement is a step in the right direction by the Minister and the new Premier.
“We look forward to continuing to work with the government on governance reform, and ensuring investment is delivered for much-needed equipment and capital infrastructure projects.”