Real-time ED data for Canberra community

The ACT has gone live with a real-time data website that tracks waiting times for treatment or admissions in the emergency departments of its two public hospitals.

In addition to data on current activity at both Calvary and Canberra Hospital emergency departments, it includes links to other services such as the nurse-led walk-in centres for minor illnesses and injuries, the Canberra After hours Locum Medical Service (CALMS) and Healthdirect Australia's 24-hour hotline and a searchable database for local health services such as pharmacies.

ACT chief minister and minister for health Katy Gallagher said the idea was to help patients make an informed decision about which public health facility will best meet their immediate needs, particularly those with lower-urgency conditions.

"The website shows real time data about the current activity of both Calvary and Canberra Hospital emergency departments including the number of patients currently waiting for treatment and the number of patients likely to present within the following two hours," Ms Gallagher said.

"The website also reminds people of other options for receiving care and treatment, including the use of the walk-in centres and local general practice.

"It is designed to help people make an informed decision about the best and quickest place to seek treatment, particularly for patients with non life or limb threatening conditions.”

Canberra's two emergency departments see over 100,000 patients each year, a growth of 25 per cent since 2008, a period that saw a population growth of just nine per cent.

"The number of people presenting to hospital for treatment is disproportionate to the population growth and the ACT government has recognised that we need to ensure the community is well informed about other alternative treatment options,” Ms Gallagher said.

"The real-time emergency data website will also enable the community to see how busy these departments are and highlight some of the positive work our emergency departments are doing."

Posted in Allied Health

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