Launceston General Hospital needs solutions and it needs them now.
While the government's forward planning to improve the state's health system deserves some credit, the timeline for solutions remains skewed.
It's one thing to plan for the next 50 years of health service delivery in the North, but when patients are "dying unnecessarily" as claimed by LGH registrars, it's clear interim solutions are needed in the short-term.
Now, Australia's peak training organisation for specialist emergency personnel has asked for a commitment from the state government to implement revised measures to address longstanding bed block issues at the hospital.
That is, to ensure 60 per cent of patients requiring admission to the hospital are admitted within in four hours.
It's not the first time the Australasian College of Emergency Medicine has called on the state government to address longstanding issues of bed block at our hospitals.
In May last year, a damning auditors general's report found the LGH spent more than 70 per cent of its time between June 2018 and January 2019 in a state of "almost constant gridlock" and at the highest level of escalation.
The report formed the catalyst for an access solutions meeting in June co-hosted by the college and then Health Minister Michael Ferguson.
At the time the focus was the Royal Hobart Hospital, with the promise that agreed solutions would eventually be rolled out to the state's North and North-West.
By December that year, new Health Minister Sarah Courtney attended an internal meeting with clinicians at the LGH. But now almost a year on, it seems things aren't getting any better.
Yes, the government has taken action. It has continued to engage with ACEM in implementing additional resources and patient flow teams.
Ms Courtney has also highlighted additional plans aimed at increasing capacity to look after more acute patients.
There is also renewed focus on keeping people out of hospitals and reducing front door demand. But it's not going to happen overnight.
Meanwhile, our hospital's ED remains consistently overcrowded, with patients requiring admittance waiting too long.
The government has acknowledged the "challenges and periods of real pressure at the LGH" and says it's committed to doing whatever it can to meet growing demand.
While strong words, it doesn't represent what the college has asked for - a commitment to a reducing wait times in real time.
No more talking - it's time for action.
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