The latest data highlighting the lack of performance from the ACT Health system shows we still have the longest emergency department waiting times in the country. The health of Canberrans is still being put at risk by a government addicted to light rail, Leader of the Opposition and Shadow Minister for Health Jeremy Hanson said today.

The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare’s (AIHW) Emergency Department Care 2014-15 report released today has the median emergency department waiting time in the ACT at 37 minutes. Nationally it is 18 minutes,” Mr Hanson said.

“We also have the lowest percentage of patients seen on time at a lowly 59 percent. Across the border in NSW that figure is 81 percent while the national average is 74 percent.

“Furthermore, the report highlights that despite the fact the ACT has experienced a lower than national average increase in presentations over the last five years at 3.7 percent, we are still performing a lot worse than other jurisdictions that have coped with higher demand. Nationally the average increase in demand was 4.5 percent.

“The explanation for this prolonged underperformance is simple. The government is funnelling all of its attention into a light rail project that most Canberrans won’t use. Sadly for Canberrans everyone needs a quality health system, but the government has a serious priority problem,” Mr Hanson concluded.