Providing access to appropriate and timely health care is an integral component of hospital care. This section explores several measures of access to Australia’s hospitals including waiting times for selected services.
Explore more information about access to hospitals via the links at the bottom of the page.
Access to hospitals
All data in these visualisations are available for download in the Data & downloads section of the MyHospitals website.
Public hospitals in Australia
The size, number of beds and activity of these hospitals varied by hospital peer group.
Admitted patient care – remoteness area
In 2019–20, hospitalisations per 1,000 population in public hospitals increased with increased remoteness.
Admitted patient care – socioeconomic status
In 2019–20, people who lived in the lowest SES area were more likely to be admitted to a public hospital compared to people living in other areas.
An accessible hospital system delivers healthcare that is timely, geographically reasonable and provides services in a setting where skills and resources are appropriate to a person’s medical need (WHO 2006).
Accessibility of Australia’s hospitals can be measured in a number of ways, including:
In 2020–21, emergency department waiting times differed by where a person lived:
In 2019–20, rates of admission and waiting times for admission from public hospital elective surgery waiting lists, differed by remoteness of area of usual residence and SES:
More data on Admitted patient care 2019–20 is available to explore in the Info and downloads section.
Data on Emergency department care 2019–20 can be found in the Emergency Department care theme page or the data downloads section.
More information on elective surgery waiting times and procedures can be found in the Elective Surgery theme page which primarily uses the National Elective Surgery Waiting Times Data Collection.
Definitions of the terms used in this section are available in the Glossary.
Reference: WHO (2006) Quality of care: a process for making strategic choices in health systems. WHO, Paris.
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