More on LGH lists but wait time less

The Launceston General Hospital waiting list grew by more than 9 per cent in the three months to September 30 but patients were dealt with faster than the same time the previous year.

The Health and Human Services quarterly progress chart released yesterday showed that while the Launceston General Hospital's waiting list grew, elective surgery patients were waiting nine days less than the same time in 2011.

Waiting time for elective surgery at the Royal Hobart Hospital went up by one day.

Elective surgery waiting lists went up by 21.5 per cent at the North West Regional Hospital and by more than 25 per cent at the Mersey Community Hospital. Corresponding waiting times for elective surgery patients dropped by nine days at the North West Regional and four days at the Mersey.

State Health Minister Michelle O'Byrne said that the latest figures were testament to the ''exceptional'' work of the state's health professionals in what had been a period of increasing demand and a challenging economic environment.

But opposition health spokesman Jeremy Rockliff said the data showed that waiting lists had actually blown out.

The data was similar to that released on the federal government MyHospital site last week.

But it also revealed more detail about the day-to-day operation of the three new Tasmanian Health Organisations in their first three months of operation.

In return for $30.5 million over four years for additional elective surgery from the federal health rescue package, Tasmania has to perform at least 2600 extra procedures for patients who have waited the longest beyond the clinically recommended period for their surgery.

These procedures have started at the acute care hospitals in each of the three Tasmanian Health Organisations.

There will be a minimum 500 extra procedures across the state each financial year until June 30, 2016.

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