$5.3m for elective surgery

TASMANIA'S three health organisations will receive $5.3 million over the next four months to process 673 additional elective surgery procedures statewide.

The money is part of $16 million that will be included in the coming state budget for elective surgery, which itself is part of a four-year $76 million commitment from the government for elective surgery.

Health Minister Michael Ferguson said the government had specifically targeted adults on category 1 and 2 lists who had been waiting for surgery the longest, and children.

``Nearly half of the Tasmanians who have been waiting on the elective surgery waiting list haven't been seen within the clinically recommended period of time,'' Mr Ferguson said.

He said nearly 200 of the 673 elective surgery cases, to be handled between July 1 and October 31, concerned children.

In the North, $1.76 million will be spent over that time, with $2.6 million in the South and $885,000 in the North-West.

There are 349 cases to be processed in the North by the end of October - 102 of which involve paediatric procedures.

Mr Ferguson said the state's elective surgery commitments would not be impacted by budget cuts at a federal level as they were already written into service agreements with the three THOs to begin from this week.

He said negotiations between state and federal representatives over the cuts were moving in the right direction.

``We're not satisfied that we are there yet but we are pressing the case and those conversations and constructive discussions have been very positive,'' Mr Ferguson said.

``We can't leave things as they are with the federal budget.''

State Health Minister Michael Ferguson says the government has targeted category 1 and 2 surgery lists, and children. Picture: SCOTT GELSTON

State Health Minister Michael Ferguson says the government has targeted category 1 and 2 surgery lists, and children. Picture: SCOTT GELSTON

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