26 Nov 2010

Hospitals miss health targets

11:40 am on 26 November 2010

Winter illnesses and high patient numbers have reduced hospitals' ability to meet some health targets recently.

The Government has issued details on the performance of district health boards on key targets for the latest quarter.

Six of the 20 DHBs - almost all small ones - achieved the Government's target of ensuring that 95% of patients are admitted, discharged or transferred out of a hospital emergency department within six hours.

The national average for the target was 85% - a dip compared to the previous quarter.

The Government says winter illnesses were behind the dip, with high hospital occupany levels and busy emergency departments.

Considering the Canterbury earthquake on 4 September, it was commendable that no patients at the regional cancer centre there waited longer than four weeks, for capacity reasons, to start cancer radiotherapy.