THE impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the local health system has been revealed with a 36% drop in elective surgeries performed and a massive 48% increase in people waiting for elective surgery.
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The Coffs Harbour Health Campus statistics were recently revealed in The Bureau of Health Information Healthcare Quarterly report from April to June, 2020.
According to the report, the number of elective surgery procedures performed at Coffs Harbour Health Campus dropped 36.3% with only 585 procedures performed from April to June this year, as opposed to 918 procedures performed from April to June 2019.
The number of non-urgent elective surgeries performed dropped a massive 81.1% from 84 from April to June this year, compared to 445 performed from April to June 2019.
From 26 March, the National Cabinet suspended all non-urgent elective surgery, before a staged resumption of surgical activity from late April.
Patients on a waiting list for elective surgery climbed with 2,933 locals waiting for surgery from April to June this year, as opposed to only 1,979 waiting from April to June 2019, an increase of 48.2%.
Those waiting for urgent elective surgery increased 66.7% with 50 people waiting from April to June this year, compared to 30 people waiting for urgent elective surgery from April to June 2019.
The large number of locals staying and working from home this year has resulted in an 18.5% drop in presentations to the Coffs Harbour Health Campus Emergency Department with 7,822 people presenting to the ED from April to June this year, compared to 9,602 from April to June 2019.
Non-urgent cases presented to the ED dropped a massive 39.1% with only 699 people presenting with injuries from April to June this year, compared to 1,147 from April to June 2019.
Admissions to the hospital from other hospital emergency departments were also down 15.9% with 2,926 recorded from April to June this year, compared to 3,481 from April to June 2019.
Bureau of Health Information chief executive Dr Diane Watson said the recent report revealed the impact of the pandemic, particularly the far-reaching changes to people’s lives.
By Emma DARBIN