Health services busier than ever

It’s been a busy 12 months for West Moreton Health services, with medical staff striving to meet the rising demands of Ipswich’s growing population.

On average, 70 patients underwent surgeries or procedures every day during 2019.

“Each year gets busier at West Moreton Health due to a growing population, which is expected to double from 290,000 to 587,000 by 2036,” West Moreton Health Chief Executive Dr Kerrie Freeman said.

“2,731 babies were born at Ipswich Hospital in 2019, an average of seven every day.”

250 people a day sought help at emergency departments at Ipswich, Boonah, Esk, Gatton and Laidley hospitals.

A fifth of those patients were classed as Category One patients, which means they required immediate care. That represents an 11.5% increase on the previous year.

West Moreton Health expanded its renal, oncology and palliative care services.

Virtual and digital solutions also helped doctors provide more care to patients outside of hospitals, through programs like Mobile Enabled Care, or MeCare.

Telehealth programs were used to support prison health services.

Public health and infection prevention were kept busy, as they managed eight outbreaks of influenza and two of measles.

A $5.7 million state-of-the-art Magnetic Resonance Imaging Suite opened at Ipswich Hospital in December.

The 7-tonne machine is expected to provide more than 3,700 MRI scans each year for patients.

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