Independent report finds Queensland is one of the nation’s best health performers
Published Thursday, 01 February, 2024 at 11:29 AM
Minister for Health, Mental Health and Ambulance Services and Minister for Women
The Honourable Shannon Fentiman
- Queensland is better than the national average in critical areas of health, according to the 2024 Report on Government Services (RoGS)
- RoGS found almost nine in 10 people were waiting within the clinically recommended time for elective surgeries.
- Queensland significantly increased hospital bed numbers compared to NSW and Victoria and outperformed the national average on key patient safety metrics.
- More than 80 per cent of patients visiting an emergency department or being admitted to hospital reported a positive experience.
- Queensland has more staff per capita caring for patients compared to the national average and its health network is delivering the most cost-efficient care compared to other states.
- The findings reflect Queensland’s record $25.8 billion investment in healthcare to deliver new and upgraded facilities and boost frontline services to ensure the community continues to receive world-class health care.
Queensland is outperforming national benchmarks in critical areas of healthcare, including for emergency department presentations, positive patient experiences and elective surgeries, according to the latest Report on Government Services (RoGS).
The 2024 edition of RoGS revealed Queensland as one of the best healthcare providers in the country despite burgeoning demand on its network.
According to the report, Queensland is employing more frontline staff and delivering more episodes of care per 1,000 head of population compared to the national average, while providing more cost-efficient care than any other state.
The report found Queensland was the top-performing jurisdiction for elective surgery wait times, with almost nine in 10 people waiting within the clinically recommended time – a 3 per cent improvement compared to 2021-22.
The report also revealed most people were overwhelmingly likely to have a positive experience with Queensland’s hospitals.
More than 80 per cent of people visiting an emergency department or being admitted to hospital reported doctors and nurses listened carefully, showed respect and spent enough time with them – better than the national average across all three elements.
Queensland also bettered the national average for the combined total of emergency department patients seen within clinically recommended times, which have continued to improve based on the most recent hospital performance data.
Those admitted to a Queensland hospital were also likely to receive a high level of quality healthcare.
Queensland outperformed the national average in minimising adverse events and patient falls, and increased bed numbers by 7.1 per cent to keep pace with population growth.
In contrast, NSW reduced bed numbers by 3 per cent and Victoria only increased its numbers by 0.3 per cent, according to the report.
The findings come amid the record $25.8 billion investment in Queensland Health to deliver the state’s largest health infrastructure program in history through the Health Big Build. The record health budget has also meant Queensland has hired more than 7,230 additional frontline staff since 2020.
RoGS 2024 also found Queensland performed very well in delivering public dental services, despite ongoing strong demand, slashing the median wait time for general dental care appointments by 108 days compared to 2021-2022.
This coincided with an increase in the number of babies immunised to more than 92 per cent, and a reduction in the proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies born with low birthweight.
The figure has fallen to 8.3 per cent, better than the national average of 9.1 per cent.
While Queensland is one of the safest places in the world to give birth, the report showed a small increase in the perinatal death rate. Reasons for changes in perinatal mortality rates are complex and include a range of factors such as a mother’s age, overall health and other social issues.
In order to better understand these trends, the Health Minister has tasked the Queensland Maternal and Perinatal Quality Council to undertake an in-depth clinical review to identify potential causal factors and make any necessary recommendations.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Health, Mental Health and Ambulance Services and Minister for Women, Shannon Fentiman:
“We have seen unprecedented demand for the state’s health system in recent years, but the latest Report on Government Services shows Queensland continues to perform exceptionally across a range of measures.”
“On average, our public hospitals are delivering more care, with more staff, and are doing it more efficiently than other Australian states and territories.
“We are the best state in the country for seeing elective surgery patients within the clinically recommended time frame, which is an amazing achievement.”
“The fact that almost all patients engaging with one of our hospitals reported a positive experience is testament to the wonderful frontline staff who go to work every day to help their fellow Queenslanders.
“We are committed to building on these positive results, which is we are delivering the largest health infrastructure build in our state’s history, hiring thousands more staff, and delivering better health services closer to home.
“While the results in RoGS 2024 are largely positive, there is more to do.
“I want to do everything possible to understand any preventable causes of perinatal deaths, which is why I have asked the Queensland Maternal and Perinatal Quality Council to look at perinatal mortality in Queensland and whether there are recommendations that we should implement.
Media Contact: Phoenix Campbell 0439 949 719