Hospital bed figures manipulated
HEALTH Minister Paul Lucas has been caught out fudging bed figures in Queensland hospitals, including Gympie’s, according to LNP Health Spokesperson Mark McArdle.
He says they have fudged the figures by including thousands of chairs, trolleys, stretchers and other furniture in his official bed count.
Documents obtained by the Opposition under Freedom of Information show for the first time the number of ‘real beds’ separated from the number of ‘bed alternatives’ such as chairs, trolleys and stretchers at each of the state’s hospitals.
Mr McArdle said the figures revealed that at the Gympie Hospital in December 2009, Labor included 32 chairs, trolleys, stretchers and other furniture in their bed count.
“These figures show that Bligh and Labor will claim there were 99 ‘beds’ at the Gympie Hospital in December 2009, but 32 of these, or 32.3 per cent, are ‘bed alternatives’.
“Imagine your loved one being shown to a ‘bed’ and being presented with a trolley in a hallway.
“These chairs, stretchers and trolleys are where the Bligh government likes to park patients stuck in emergency departments because there are not enough beds.
“The recent death of an elderly man in Queensland after spending four hours on a trolley in an Emergency Department may have been avoided if he had been in a real bed with clinical staff tending to him.
“I challenge the Deputy Premier to come clean and publish regularly on his department’s website the number of real beds available at the Gympie hospital, separated out from chairs, trolleys, stretchers and other furniture.
“Newsflash Minister a chair is not a bed.”