Blame laid as Bendigo Hospital waiting lists grow

Elective surgery waiting lists at Bendigo Hospital grew slightly for the June quarter, as more than 8000 Victorians were added to waiting lists over the past 12 months.

The figures from the Victorian Health Services Performance Report – from April to June – show 948 people were waiting for elective surgery at Bendigo Health, compared to 665 this time last year.

In the first quarter of this year there were 936 patients at Bendigo Health waiting for treatment. Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews said the waiting list would continue to swell unless the state government increased funding to meet demand.

In Bendigo yesterday, Mr Andrews said the system had worsened in the past 18 months.

“Everybody remembers the cutbacks of the Kennett government but this government is no better,” he said.

“Public hospital patients are undoubtedly struggling because of this government.” 

Health minister David Davis said the federal government’s health funding cuts had limited Victorian public hospitals’ ability to treat more patients in time.

He said the share of expenditure on public hospitals had dropped from 44 per cent in 2008-09 to 39.1 per cent.

“These are the federal government’s own figures, and they confirm that Canberra has pulled money back from Victoria and forced us to fund more and more of the cost of running our hospitals.” 

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