Elective surgery numbers up

People have come forward to share their horror stories.
People have come forward to share their horror stories.

More people had elective surgery in Taranaki than predicted in the last three months, exceeding Ministry of Health targets.

The Taranaki District Health Board had a goal of 2160 surgeries, which it exceeded by performing 2305, an increase of 145.

The health target results for the second quarter of 2013-14 were yesterday released by the Ministry of Health.

The targets provided a useful indication of how the Taranaki DHB was doing, said Becky Jenkins, planning, funding, and population health general manager.

The target for improving access to elective surgery was exceeded by 6.3 per cent.

Eight DHBs were five per cent or more ahead of the target.

However, the Taranaki DHB fell slightly short when it came to getting 95 per cent of emergency department patients admitted, discharged or transferred from the ED within six hours.

Taranaki achieved 94 per cent, which was disappointing, Ms Jenkins said.

"The number of patients presenting to ED over this period has increased markedly, which has impacted on the workload."

Taranaki's worst performance in the six key areas was helping smokers to quit.

The aim was to offer 90 per cent of smokers advice and support to quit the habit when seen by a health practitioner in primary care.

They reached 71 per cent, which was an increase of 4 per cent, Ms Jenkins said.

But when it came to providing the advice to hospital patients TDHB achieved 96 per cent, which exceeded the target by 1 per cent.

And the TDHB achieved 1 per cent short of the 90 per cent target when it came to increasing immunisation rates.

"Increasing immunisation rates are a priority in order to reduce the incidence of preventable disease in our community," Ms Jenkins said.

Diabetes and cardiovascular disease continued to be among the main causes of ill health in Taranaki.

The TDHB increased the number of heart and diabetes checks by 4.6 per cent on the quarter one results, with Taranaki DHB having the sixth highest result of the 20 DHBs. But at 80 per cent, it was still short of the 90 per cent target.

TDHB hit the 100 per cent target when it came to shorter waits for cancer patients, as did all but two other DHBs.

Taranaki Daily News