The number of emergency patients presenting to Shoalhaven District Hospital has soared in the Jan-March quarter of 2019, compared to the same quarter last year, according to the latest Bureau of Health Information (BHI) Quarterly results.
Arrivals at the emergency department by ambulance have increased by 11.9 per cent, and patients in the emergency department needing to be resuscitated have increased by 34 per cent, the report showed.
It also showed hospital admissions from the emergency department were up by four per cent.
The median time to treatment for all triage categories has increased. For the most urgent cases, the increase was eight minutes, but semi-urgent patients waited an average of 31 minutes longer to be seen, according to the report.
Only 70 per cent of patients were seen on time. The average time for a patient to leave the emergency department was three hours and 12 minutes, but for ten per cent of patients it took over eight hours to leave.
The results reflect a state-wide trend of increased presentations to emergency departments and less timely treatment, the report said.
Illawarra Shoalhaven Local Health District Executive Director Clinical Operations, Margaret Martin, said she was pleased with the hospital's performance on elective and urgent surgeries.
"Shoalhaven Hospital performed 93.5 per cent of the 933 surgeries on time, an improvement of 4.2 percentage points compared to the 2018 quarter," she said.
"There was also a 5.7 percentage point improvement in the amount of semi-urgent surgeries performed on time with 96.3 per cent of the 273 surgeries completed. 89.3 per cent of 438 non urgent surgeries were performed on time compared to 84 per cent in the 2018 period - a 5.3 percentage point improvement."
She said the district's emergency departments have a number of initiatives to improve the delivery and timeliness of emergency department care.