A new report from the Australian Medical Association (AMA) has described how Australia’s public hospitals are caught in an unending cycle of crisis caused by a funding formula which fails to arrest the steady and sustained decline of hospital performance over the last decade.
The AMA’s latest analysis, “Public Hospitals: Cycle of Crisis“, paints a picture of even greater unmet demand, fewer hospital beds, overcrowded emergency departments (ED) and longer waits for elective surgery.
The report details how the hospital crisis was in full swing – in every State and Territory – long before COVID-19 arrived. It analyses the funding arrangements underpinning the hospital system and states they are not fit for purpose as they fail to meet the demands of our growing and ageing population. The report concludes that the way to break free from the cycles of crisis is to change the way hospitals are funded – moving beyond just the focus on activity and volume to a partnership based on community demand and timeliness of treatment.
- Public Hospitals – Cycle of Crisis. Australian Medical Association. October 2021