Australia's Government Health Care System is "broke"
THE full extent of the disease plaguing the NSW health system can be revealed, with an analysis showing every one of the state's 220 public hospitals is either battling to pay bills, struggling to attract staff or short of beds.
Experts have told The Sunday Telegraph the health crisis has for the first time permeated the entire state, extending from major Sydney hospitals to rural and regional centres in Moree, Broken Hill and Albury.
Dr Brian Morton, president of the NSW branch of the Australian Medical Association (AMA), said the state of the public health system had plunged to an unprecedented low.
"(The system) is basically broke and all the health services are in trouble,'' he said.
Among major problems blighting the system are:
* All of the eight area health services are facing major funding, staffing and supply shortages.
* New fears of deadly superbug outbreaks, as cleaning budgets are slashed across NSW, which already has Australia's highest rate of hospital-acquired infections.
* NSW Health's finances are a "significant problem'', according to the Auditor-General's Office, with a "large number of errors detected during the audit process'' as well as missed deadlines.
* Patients being denied basic drugs, medical supplies and quality food because of cost-cutting. . . .