Austin Health

Mr CARBINES (Ivanhoe) — I am pleased to report to the house on some key achievements at Austin Health in 2016–17. Austin Health’s elective surgery list was at an all‑time low with a final figure of 2273, well under the target of 2340. It performed the highest number of elective surgery operations ever, with 12 558 operations. Overall surgery increased 5 per cent from the previous year and 21 per cent over the past five years. The health service also finished with a positive financial result. We saw the completion of the $15.23 million Austin Hospital emergency department short‑stay unit. Its expansion provides increased treatment capacity and improved patient flow through the emergency department. An additional two intensive care unit beds were also opened in this past year.

We recall when those opposite, under the Kennett regime, sought to privatise the Austin Hospital. A consequence of that was of course the election of a Labor government under Steve Bracks. The people in my community in the north‑east of Melbourne have not forgotten the commitments of those opposite in relation to Austin Health.

I was also very pleased to be with my community for Vietnam Veterans Day at the repatriation hospital site, a campus of Austin Health. Again, this is a place that is very important to my community and the veteran community at large. I commend Austin Health and the thousands of staff who work there.