Ambulance ramping reaches crisis levels

Ambulance ramping reaches crisis levels

Tuesday 6 September 2016


Ambulance ramping figures have reached crisis levels across metropolitan Perth, with patients waiting up to 10 hours  to be seen by a doctor.


Senior emergency department doctors said rising ambulance ramping figures are just the tip of the iceberg, with patients clearing ambulances only to wait  again to see a doctor inside the emergency departments of hospitals.


AMA (WA) President Dr Andrew Miller has said the situation is out of control, and has reached a point where not all patients can count on the Western Australian public health system.


“We now have double queues, with ambulance ramping off the charts, but even when you get to the end of the ambulance ramp you join another internal queue to see a doctor,” he said.


“Complications will occur when you have people waiting on stretchers for such a long time to be treated,” he said.


Figures show that with the exception of Midland Public Hospital, ramping is higher at all Metropolitan hospitals compared to last year’s figures.


“Some hospitals have seen a 300 per cent increase in ramping figures – these are international standards for the first world that are not being met” Dr Miller said.


“Unless we see a resource injection in our emergency departments and improved capacity, there will be some terrible avoidable tragedies. Very sick people cannot fly off to other cities to get the treatment they need,” he said.

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