The pressure of increased population in our area is causing critical failings at the Prince of Wales Hospital as it struggles to cope.
I have been warning the O'Farrell Liberal government that poor planning policies and increased population densities have been putting huge pressure on not just transport and roads, but also schools and hospitals. I am often dismissed as scaremongering.
This month an internal NSW Health Department report prepared for the O'Farrell Liberals has revealed critical failings at South wast Sydney hospitals - with staff warning of serious structural issues, inability to meet increasing demand and failure to meet clinical standards.
The report highlights serious issues at St George, Sutherland and Prince of Wales hospitals with all three failing to meet demands of an increasing population in the region - and facilities and infrastructure are "inadequate, inefficient and ineffective, resulting in failures."
Specific issues identified in the report in relation to Prince of Wales Hospital:
- The older buildings require extensive upgrades to meet current fire protection standards;
- The Emergency Department space availability has reached limits - with overcrowding and an inability to reach demand;
- Patients in the Intensive Care Unit Isolation rooms are currently being treated in non-conforming facilities;
- The hospital facilities do not meet required clinical or Australian Standards.
Mr O'Farrell should be investing more money in this hospital - not cutting funds. Ultimately lives will be at risk unless the penny drops with the Liberals that health care is a quality of life issue and not just a balance sheet. Protection of human life is more important than a "triple bottom line."