An elderly woman has died at Busselton Hospital Health Campus after a three hour wait on the hospital’s emergency department ramp on Tuesday.
The woman, who was taken to the regional Health Campus after complaining of back pain, was forced to make the long wait under the watch of paramedics, instead of being transferred into hospital care. During this time, the elderly woman is suspected to have suffered a heart attack that may have led to her death.
Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson has said the circumstances surrounding the woman’s death will be thoroughly investigated, and the WA Government has ordered an investigation into the matter. It is expected that the investigation will take at least six weeks.
Following the tragedy, Libby Mettam Opposition Health Spokesperson said, ‘there has been warning after warning about what the tragic implications would be for not addressing the ramping crisis.’
As the hospitals excessive ramping and emergency response times continue to surge, we are seeing the signaling of yet another health system in crisis.
Australian Medical Association WA Dr Mark Duncan-Smith said the state has the lowest number of hospital beds per head of population of any state or territory in Australia, and that he hoped lessons could be learnt from the tragedy.