Patients at Shoalhaven District Hospital are being transported to Shellharbour Hospital to cope with increasing patient numbers, bed shortages and to reduce delays in the emergency department.
Shoalhaven Hospital Group general manager Craig Hamer said reducing ED delays was a whole of hospital challenge.
"It's not just the emergency department, it's the availability of beds within the hospital itself," he said.
"We've also been transferring some patients to Shellharbour Hospital, particularly patients that live in the northern part of the Shoalhaven.
"If those patients... can receive appropriate care at Shellharbour we've been endeavouring to transfer and work on that transfer arrangement.
Read the original story here:Shoalhaven Hospital ED delay second worst in state
"The delays for patients are compacted by the increasing presentations that we've been having to the emergency department.
"We have been looking to employ more senior doctors... so we've got regular doctors in the emergency department, rather than doctors that come in for a short period."
These comments follow data published by the Bureau of Health Information which showed Shoalhaven Hospital had some of the worst ED waiting times in NSW.
One alarming statistic was in the worst 10 per cent of cases, patients who needed treatment within 10 minutes (having an imminently life-threatening condition) waited over 52 minutes for treatment.
Mr Hamer reassured the community no lives were at risk.
"It doesn't put their life at risk... those patients are still monitored by the nursing staff and will escalate to the medical staff if their condition deteriorates," he said.
"If their condition deteriorates while they are waiting they'll receive the immediate care that they need."
Mr Hamer acknowledged the hospital wasn't meeting recommended treatment times and said "improvement is needed".