The data in this section relates to the waiting times of people who presented to the ED with a type of visit of Emergency presentation.
The progress of the patient through the ED is recorded using 5 different time points: presentation time, triage time, clinical care commencement, episode end time and physical departure time as depicted in Figure 1.
These can be used to calculate the waiting times for 50% and 90% of patients, as well as the proportion of patients seen on time.
The waiting time is calculated as the time between arrival at the ED and commencement of clinical care.
Figure 1: Measurement of time patients spend in emergency departments
See Tables 5.1, 5.2 and 5.3 for caveat information on these data. Available to download in the data section.
Waiting time for 50% of patients (median)
In 2017–18, 50% of patients were seen within 15 minutes in New South Wales and within 46 minutes in the Australian Capital Territory.
Between 2013–14 and 2014–15, 50% of patients were seen within 18 minutes. Between 2014–15 and 2017–18, 50% of patients were seen within 19 minutes.
Waiting time for 90% of patients
In 2017–18, 90% of patients were seen within 78 minutes in New South Wales and within 159 minutes in the Australian Capital Territory.
Overall, the time within which 90% of patients were seen increased from 93 minutes in 2013–14 to 99 minutes in 2017–18.
For more information about the performance indicator Waiting time for emergency hospital care—proportion seen on time, see Waiting times: Proportion seen on time.