AMA (NSW) is pleased the NSW Government has announced day procedures will resume in private facilities from Tuesday 5 October.
“This is a win for patients who have been anxiously waiting for much-needed non-COVID care,” said Dr Danielle McMullen, AMA (NSW) President.
“It also means medical professionals can get back to the business of reducing the backlog of elective procedures.”
While supportive of the need to prioritise the COVID response, AMA (NSW) has been urging the NSW Government to consider a return to some level of elective surgery activity to alleviate the pressure building for non-COVID healthcare.
“Day surgeries are a relatively easy ‘tap’ to turn on and off. If we need to utilise private facilities and healthcare workers for the COVID response, then we can shut those services down. But at the moment, there is no reason to keep these facilities empty and health professionals idle while patients sit at home suffering in pain.
“While COVID remains important, we need to look at providing non-COVID care otherwise the downstream effects on patients will be profound.
“This decision will help address that crisis and make our return to ‘COVID normal’ a little easier, but it is just the first step. We’re asking the NSW Government to put a plan in place for the return of all elective surgery as soon as possible.
“We need equity of access across the public and private hospital systems. If you’re booked for an operation at a public hospital, we’re working with NSW Health to make it easy for your team to care for you at any facility where surgery is currently available,” Dr McMullen said.
Media contact: Andrea Cornish – 0419 402 955