Surgery funding boosted

HELEN HARVEY
Last updated 05:00 07/02/2014

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More than 50 extra patients in Taranaki will receive elective surgery in the next five months after the Government announced an extra $10 million in funding.

Taranaki District Health Board received more than $300,000 for surgery for 55 more patients.

But whether the increase in surgery would help people not currently on the waiting list had yet to be decided, clinical services manager Lee McManus said.

"It's early days. We are just in the planning stage."

The surgeries had to be completed by the end of June.

Taranaki DHB was seeing more patients than it was required to, she said.

"But of course we cannot see all people who may benefit from surgery. We would like to see more people, but we always have to prioritise and see those people with the greatest need first."

Mrs McManus said the DHB was pleased to receive the funding.

"We are looking to utilise this opportunity for orthopaedics and we are working to identify other specialties where it is also needed, this is likely to be in ear nose and throat, and ophthalmology."

There were six orthopaedic surgeons at Taranaki DHB and it was looking to hire a seventh by the end of the year.

If people who had been referred back to their GPs without getting on the waiting list found their conditions had changed or got worse, they should go back to their GP and get reassessed and re-referred, she said.

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- Taranaki Daily News

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