Hon Amber-Jade Sanderson BA MLA

Hon Amber-Jade Sanderson BA MLA

Minister for Health; Mental Health

    More elective surgery bookings resume at hospitals

    1/05/2022 8:00 AM
    • Resumption of non-urgent category 2 and 3 elective surgery bookings
    • Private elective surgery bookings to scale up from week beginning May 2
    • Public elective surgery bookings to scale up from week beginning May 9
    • Follows earlier resumption of short-stay surgeries at private hospitals
    • Agile management of elective surgery contributes to Omicron wave soft landing 

    Private and public hospitals will soon be able to resume booking more elective surgeries, as WA Health's temporary pause on some category 2 and 3 bookings during the Omicron outbreak is lifted.


    The decision was made following consideration of the level of COVID-19 transmission in the community and impact on the hospital system.


    Health service providers will be able to scale up their elective surgery bookings activity, subject to staffing and capacity within their hospitals.


    Patients who have had their surgery deferred will be contacted by their treating hospital once a booking slot is available.


    Staff furlough will continue to be managed to ensure the safe delivery of services.


    The scale down on bookings for elective surgeries began March 14 at WA public hospitals and March 21 for private hospitals, to safeguard capacity in case significant staff furlough pressures arose.


    During the scale down, there was no change to Category 1 bookings and those surgeries continued.


    Short-stay Category 3 and non-urgent Category 2 elective surgeries resumed at private hospitals March 23, following a review on the pause on performing of certain surgeries.


    Comments attributed to Health Minister Amber-Jade Sanderson:


    "During this pandemic, the health system has taken an agile and planned approach to elective surgery.


    "The temporary pause on bookings for non-urgent Category 2 and 3 elective surgery was necessary to ensure we had capacity in our system to respond to an expected increase in COVID-19 patients.


    "I'd once again like to thank patients and their families for their understanding as we navigated through a very high caseload period.


    "Fortunately, and with careful management of the pandemic in Western Australia, hospitalisations of patients with COVID-19 have been remarkably low.


    "I'd also like to thank those working in our public and private hospitals for their ongoing partnership with WA Health in managing the COVID-19 pandemic and for their care for our community."


    Minister's office - 6552 5900