Home' The Canberra Times : Chronicle 17.01.12 Contents 11-14085/1
DELIVERING COMMUNITY NEWS ACROSS CANBERRA AND QUEANBEYAN
Volume 17 No. 2
TUESDAY, JANUARY 17, 2012
Phone: 6280 2122 Fax: 6239 1345
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A.C.T. LIFESAVERS SHOW OFF
NEW WINE-MAKING COURSE
GOES BEHIND THE SCENES Surgery
Operating theatres remain
underused in Queanbeyan
Doctor and nurse shortages, and obstacles allowing specialists to work at Queanbeyan Hospital, are all having
an impact on the amount of elective surgery being undertaken.
Picture: Elesa Lee
Continued Page 8
A LACK of specialists, doctors and
nurses is to blame for only 75 elective
surgeries being performed a month at
the Queanbeyan Hospital, according to
local GP Ross Hendry.
Dr Hendry -- who is also a visiting
medical officer at the hospital -- said
because of the shortages there were
three operating theatres not being fully
utilised on a daily basis and patients
were instead being sent across the
He believes there should be up to
120 possible uses of the theatres each
Figures from the NSW Bureau of
Health Information indicated 895 elec-
tive surgeries were performed at
Queanbeyan Hospital over a 12 month
period until September last year --
fewer than three a day or 75 a month.
Member for Monaro John Barilaro
said he was surprised by the figures but
agreed that a lack of specialists was
having an impact on the amount of
surgeries taking place.
He said there were a range of
obstacles preventing specialists com-
ing from the ACT to work at Queanbe-
yan Hospital, particularly in regards to
occupational, health and safety issues
and industrial relations.
"We are two different jurisdictions,"
Mr Barilaro said.
"But we have the willpower of this
side and Government here, and the
willpower of the ACT Government to
The State Government and ACT
Government have been negotiating a
cross-border agreement that would see
patients bypass lengthy waiting lists
for non-urgent surgery in Canberra and
instead be treated at Queanbeyan
Mr Barilaro said Health Minister
Jillian Skinner had met Chief Minister
Katy Gallagher on two occasions.
He said at the last meeting both
parties had agreed to spend a few
months finding solutions to the obsta-
cles and boundaries preventing the
agreement from going ahead.
Mr Barilaro wasn't aware of where
the process was now up to but
remained confident there would be a
resolution in the near future.
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