Covid continues to ail Victoria’s health system
Posted On April 30, 2022
Glenn McQuade is just one of Victoria’s 89,611 patients waiting for elective surgery, that number having jumped more than 9000 since December.
As the “long tail” of COVID continues to impact the state’s health system, people like 58-year-old Mr McQuade are being forced to live with the consequences.
He said he was “disheartened” when he had to stop working due to his worsening hip disease, and then to find out his surgery would be delayed by eight months.
“I hope to go back to work,” Mr McQuade told 9news.
Health Minister Martin Foley says the Omicron spike and subsequent elective surgery pause over summer is largely to blame.
“I apologise to those people who have to wait extended periods of time,” he said.
“Our heath systems continue to be under huge pressure.”
Ambulance Victoria experienced its busiest quarter in history, with 93,234 “Code 1” call-outs between January and March, a 14 per cent surge in demand.
Emergency departments saw more than 400,000 patients in that period.
Mr Foley promised elective surgery will be cranked up to 125 per cent of pre-pandemic levels.
“What we’ve said through our plan for Victoria to recover and rebuild is over the first term of a Matthew Guy-led Liberal and Nationals government, we’d halve the elective surgery wait list,” he said.
With 1500 healthcare workers furloughed everyday due to COVID-19 and other illness, it could be sometime until the system is back to full fitness.