Massive boost for elective surgery


A re-elected majority Gutwein Liberal Government will deliver the biggest ever investment into elective surgery, with $156.4 million over four years across the state, delivering an additional 22,300 elective surgeries and endoscopies.

We will prioritise 2021-22, providing an extra 8,300 surgeries statewide, bringing our total volume for that year to more than 22,800 surgeries in one year – almost twice the size of the waiting list, and the largest year of surgery ever in Tasmania.

More than 180 staff statewide are expected to support this increase in volume, including more than 112 nurses, 14 doctors, 16 allied health staff as well as more than 40 hospital support staff.

During COVID-19, the national Cabinet, in agreement with all states, acted on Public Health advice to suspend all non-urgent elective surgery, to avoid bringing COVID into our hospitals. This has led to increases in waiting lists across Australia.

Under this policy, a majority Gutwein Liberal Government will invest this new funding on top of the $36.4 million already budgeted for 2021-22, which will fund these additional surgeries and support additional staff as we secure Tasmania’s future.

This investment is estimated to deliver nearly 20,000 more elective surgeries and over 2,300 extra endoscopies over the next four years.

This will include a wide range of surgeries and procedures, including hip and knee replacements, women’s health procedures, cataract removals, hernia repair surgeries and tonsillectomies, as well as diagnostic procedures such as colonoscopies.

From 2022-23 onward, this is estimated to provide more than 3,700 additional surgeries each year.

The final volume of surgeries and endoscopies, and number for each region for each year will be dependent on the complexity of patients and the types of surgery, which will be determined in consultation with clinicians.

This new investment will help target the backlog from the pandemic, and over three years, will see significantly reduced waiting lists and waiting times for Tasmanians, as surgeries are delivered sooner.