Families separated, sick Victorians wait for care as hospital waitlist crisis worsens

Victoria’s hospital waitlist crisis continues to worsen, with a woman from the Wimmera, who is 20 weeks pregnant and in need of urgent treatment for fluid on her brain, forced to wait more than a week to be granted access to a hospital bed.

Despite all family members living in a region with no active cases of coronavirus, current COVID restrictions prevented her from being with her husband, Sam, and young daughter during her wait for treatment.

The Labor Government was pressured in State Parliament this week to ensure the woman received urgent care, but the Minister for Health refused to explain why she was being forced to wait.

Shadow Minister for Mental Health Emma Kealy said their story was one of many that laid bare the harrowing toll of lockdown.

“The sickest Victorians are waiting longer for care as hospital waitlists continue to blow out under Labor,” Ms Kealy said.

Doctors have warned the woman that health risks worsen every day she waits for the urgently-needed lumbar puncture, with complications including blindness and the loss of her unborn child.

“After a week of waiting, Sam’s wife was discharged to hospital in the home because there were no beds available for this procedure anywhere in Victoria,” Ms Kealy said.

“She’s finally now been allocated a hospital bed so this procedure can take place, but it shouldn’t have taken raising their story in State Parliament for the Government to ensure she got the care she so desperately needed.

“This family is another example of this Labor Government failing Victorian patients – causing huge emotional, physical and mental stress.

“Victoria is one of the worst performing states in Australia when it comes to delivering health services.

“Under Labor, Victorians with potentially life-threatening conditions are not being seen on time.”

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